Alan Green, a Software Engineer at Google, has posted an announcement that Google Reader is to cease operation July 1, 2013. (Reference) OUCH!!!
Google Reader is a primary tool I use to track events and happenings in Second Life, technology, and world politics. It reduces my reading time and provides a means of quickly finding important news. I love several fashion blogs and bounce through pictures of the latest fashion just for fun.
What’s a Reader?
Some know ‘Readers’ as Aggregators, reading tools that aggregate blog and web site feeds into a single tool. There are:
- Desktop Readers – ones that run on your desktop and integrate with your browser to provide a workspace that can be powerful. (why use a desktop reader)
- Web Based Readers – These are appearance-wise very much like the Desktop Readers, but are based on a web site providing the working part of the tool.
- Browser Based Readers – Some browsers have readers built in. Some add a plug-in to provide the feature.
- Web Apps for Mobile Devices – These are web based readers for, of course, mobile devices.
All of these take a URL of some blog or site you want to follow. Then they watch that URL for new information as it appears. Blogs and sites actually build in ‘feeds’, which put the information in a form that is easily machine-readable.
There is a review of Readers on Gizmo’s Free Software site: Best Free RSS Reader-Aggregator. It’s last update was November, 2012.
The image above shows the Google Reader, which I am using now. You can see it gives me a place to quickly look at what is happening. On the left is a column that shows the sites I follow and listed there is a count of how many unread articles are on a site. The main window (center) is headlines and once a blog/site is picked it turns into an index of the blog/site’s articles. Way handy for fast scanning and reading.
So, I am changing the Reader I use. It looks like FeedDemon will be my next Reader. I’m trying it now. It seems to work well. If I like it I’ll get the Pro version.
If you’re using a Reader, let me know which one and why you like it.
PS: Now I find out FeedDemon is Dying with Google Reader… 🙁 …next!