What's your favorite RSS reader?
February 2, 2005 9:17 AM   Subscribe

Now that Metafilter has cashed out for Internet noir, I would like to start to use a RSS reader. After trying several, I would like to ask which is your favorite one?
posted by orange clock to Computers & Internet (25 answers total)
I use (and enjoy) the Sage plug-in for Firefox.
posted by paulychamp at 9:27 AM on February 2, 2005

bloglines .
posted by seinfeld at 9:28 AM on February 2, 2005

Same question, but specifically for Linux. (I dunno what system orange clock is asking about.)
posted by Aknaton at 9:29 AM on February 2, 2005

Definitely Bloglines. Forget about a local install and just have it accessible everywhere. I wouldn't know what to do without it at this point.
posted by selfnoise at 9:38 AM on February 2, 2005

If you want a local reader on Linux try Liferea for Gnome/GTK, akregator for KDE/QT.

As a comment on Metafilter + RSS, you really seem to miss out on a lot with the RSS feeds. I never really notice it with other sites. See some of the recentish threads.
posted by togdon at 9:45 AM on February 2, 2005

Brownpau just got me hooked on Bloglines via all his incessant blathering about it on #mefi...and it's quite excellent. Plus there are notifiers for every platform (Windows, Mac OS X, Linux, and two Firefox/Mozilla plugins).

Bloglines :)
posted by cyrusdogstar at 9:52 AM on February 2, 2005

Bloglines, Bloglines, Bloglines. Browser-based is the only way to fly.
posted by fletchmuy at 9:56 AM on February 2, 2005

I might as well pile on; I too have been enjoying Bloglines for the last year or so.
posted by AllesKlar at 9:56 AM on February 2, 2005

If you have a Mac, I recommend NetNewsWire strongly. There's a free beta and it's not even that spendy to buy. I've found that bloglines has all the same latency I've grown to dislike in the rest of the www, but I can just run NNW in the background when I'm not even otherwise surfing the web. Nice customization available, you can use custom stylesheets.
posted by jessamyn at 10:02 AM on February 2, 2005

My solution to avoid the siren call of the suicide strumpets has been firefox/adblock plugin/kinja/
posted by mecran01 at 10:09 AM on February 2, 2005

I really don't like Bloglines. I find having a dedicated reader that acts more like a mail client/newsreader allows me to quickly scan and flag items of interest while ignoring everything else. The main reason I switched to reading things via an aggregator was to try to boost my productivity. I find that if I'm in a browser I tend to browse (ahem...).

Liferea (and I'm sure this is the case with others) uses Mozilla's Gecko rendering engine, so everything looks as good as it would in a web based app. It also features dynamic folders ala. recent versions of Outlook/Thunderbird/Evolution that allow you to see just new posts, certain kinds of posts, certain kinds of new posts, flagged posts, etc.

I can see that having every computer on the same page as to what I've read and what I've ignored as a huge advantage to using a web based reader. For now just ignore anything that comes in after I left work when I use the reader at home, and vice versa when I get back to work. Since I'm able to sort posts by the time that they arrived I can quickly pick up where I left off without worrying that I'm missing anything.
posted by togdon at 10:16 AM on February 2, 2005

Online: Bloglines

Offline: RSS Bandit
posted by neurodoc at 10:28 AM on February 2, 2005

On the desktop, it's Bloglines for me as well.

If anybody's looking for an RSS reader for their PDA, I'd suggest mobilerss.net, which delivers feeds through Avantgo.
posted by SteveInMaine at 10:34 AM on February 2, 2005

One more for the bloglines pile on. Works great on my Sidekick.
posted by Remy at 10:43 AM on February 2, 2005

The default RSS reader in Firefox is adequate for me. Just subscribe using the option in the status bar, place the "bookmark" in the bookmark toolbar, and each time you click on it, it shows you a list of the latest stories/posts on <enter site name here>.
posted by purephase at 11:04 AM on February 2, 2005

I heart t3h bloglines!

Its the only site that still uses frames that matters. If you are frequently not at your PC and at some other workstation, or on a computer where you can't install an RSS reader or firefox for whatever reason, Bloglines is obviously the best, platform agnostic, access anywhere solution.
posted by tweak at 11:09 AM on February 2, 2005

Warning: Bloglines is very, very addictive. Do not start using unless you are unemployed.
posted by Quartermass at 11:28 AM on February 2, 2005

For what it's worth, you can access MeFi through LoFi and not have to see the ad.
posted by pardonyou? at 11:46 AM on February 2, 2005

I'm using Bloglines right now, but that's because my powerbook is currently being fixed.

I usually use NetNewsWire and love it. The betas have all kinds of neat features like tabs saving, enclosure handling (with iTunes!), sorting, multi-level categorization, and lots of other stuff. It's also incredibly rock solid and a lightweight on memory. (Try opening 150 tabs in Firefox - I bet you're computer won't be usable!) I paid $40 for it and would pay more.

Bloglines is really the best server based reader, unless you want to run one yourself. For that, use Feeds on Feeds or one of the readers built off it it (that I can't find at the moment).

Anyways, I tend to see bloglines as Gmail. Gmail is the king of web based email, but most desktop clients (Outlook, Mail.app, Thunderbird) are much better. I use only Gmail, since I want the trade off of easily checking and sending email anywhere for desktop-client niceties. For RSS, I want the desktop client niceties and get a bonus of being tempted to read my feeds anywhere. Trust me, pressing spacebar to go to the next item/scroll current is really, really nice. It also makes you read more (closely).

Just like Gmail, Bloglines has POP-esk functionality. Its API lets you pull all your unread items down into a desktop client. Note that this is not IMAP-like - if you only read 2 of 200 unread in your desktop aggregator, they're all read on Bloglines. Bloglines is at fault here; their API is limited.

I would go for Bloglines at the moment. You can use a desktop client that integrates with Bloglines, but I've found that having the real client manage feeds shows you much more. If you start reading >100 feeds, a desktop client will work much better. Make sure whatever you try has OPML export of your list of subscriptions so you're not locked into it.

Good luck!
posted by easyasy3k at 11:50 AM on February 2, 2005

Oh, and don't become addicted. Go through your feeds every month or so and remove some. It's so easy to ignore feeds you really don't want, but unsubscribe! Information Overload is not good.
posted by easyasy3k at 11:53 AM on February 2, 2005

Offline; netnewswire mac.
I've tried shrook & pulp fiction, but NNW even has a freeware version.
posted by filmgeek at 12:04 PM on February 2, 2005

Nobody's mentioned the native support in Thunderbird. It's worked quite well for me, but of course is specific to the machine you've got it installed on. Howto is here.
posted by udeups at 11:39 PM on February 2, 2005

SharpReader is a small, no nonsense RSS reader that works great on Windows (you need to have .Net runtime installed though). It's very fast as well (beats the pants off Sage when I used it).
posted by PenDevil at 1:13 AM on February 3, 2005

you did note that matt said "a simple click and anyone could hide them forever" in regard to the ads?
posted by anildash at 1:54 AM on February 4, 2005

I'm with udeups. RSS is really a medium that works well in an email-style context, and Thunderbird handles it quite well. What I *really* like about it is that it translates the webpage's look-and-feel pretty flawlessly for most feeds. For example, MeFi messages are formatted in The Blue. Most RSS readers I've experimented with previously remove all formatting.

The machine-specific part of it is the most annoying part for me (i.e. my laptop thunderbird RSS doesn't anything about my desktop thunderbird RSS, but my email can all be stored on the server-side).

That said, I use RSS (and now not a browser) for Metafilter, Gizmodo, Lifehacker, and eHomeUpgrade. I tried doing news like nytimes.com front page through it, but I still find a browser to be a superior way to see an online newspaper.
posted by mcstayinskool at 1:44 PM on February 8, 2005

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