Well now, I got some good info recently, and I felt it was my duty to share with everyone. I have been a fan of and tinkerer with RSS feeds for years now, so how I missed this one I have no clue. Regardless, after my last post about “What is RSS?“, my friend Mack mentioned Google Reader in the comments of that post. Ok, I must be living under a pretty large rock, because despite all of the Google services I use day to day, I had never heard of Google Reader. I have been using a program called ShardReader as an RSS aggregator on my computer, but hadn’t thought about a web based implamentation.
Actually, say I hadn’t thought about a web based version is not true, I wrote some (IMHO) pretty cool PHP code to categorize, list and display multiple RSS feeds in one place years ago. However, this was for the purpose of displaying that information to my website visitors, I never thought about using it for myself.
That being said, there is nothing wrong with SharpReader, or any software that works for you. However, I had to write up something about Google Reader because of the beauty that it is in fact web based. I came to realize that it’s beautiful because now I can take my feeds with me wherever I go. If I have access to a web browser, and a few minutes to kill, I can catch up on my news (I am a news junkie you know). I was able to get started with no fuss using my gmail email account. Best of all, I can still use SharpReader when I feel like it, and I was able to export my feed list to a standard OPML file from SharpReader, and import it right into Google Reader. Now that is exactly how open standards are supposed to work! Good job guys!
So, if you are looking for a very good RSS news reader, plus one that you can use anywhere (even off-line now!), check Google Reader out, I have been genuinely impressed and I bet you would find that you like it.