Changing how I consume RSS

Changing how I consume RSS

(Joe Buhlig) #1

I mentioned this experiment in one of my earlier #newsletters, but I want to move those experiments to the :guild:. So here we go:

I’ve been using a combination of Feedly and Instapaper for quite some time now. But recently I’ve felt like there was too much clutter in Feedly and have grown curious about an all-in-one feed reader and read-it-later service. It seems like this should be an easy thing to accomplish. I’ve started my experiment with Unread.

I’m not entirely sure this is the right answer but it’s a start.

(Justin DiRose) #2

I’ve heard lots of great things about Unread, but the thing that scares me is that app has changed ownership 2-3 times in the last couple years. I’m using Feedly as a back end and Reeder 3 as my RSS client still. If that hadn’t happened with Unread I’d probably have switched.

(Joe Buhlig) #3

I think I’m becoming less concerned about the ownership of apps. That may be a factor of me being able to switch and migrate data easily. I’ve been pretty picky about using a flexible back-end and something like Unread is purely a UI on that data. So I can’t say this is an issue for me.

Though I’ve looked at Reeder 3 a lot lately. :wink:


You might want to look at Cappuccino - it’s a bit rough around the edges and the look and feel aren’t to everyone’s taste. There’s a free version with an optional $9.99 annual subscription for extra features

(Jeremy Wells, EA) #5

I agree with Joe on Feedly, but I love the ability to read and process on the iOS app as well as in macOS Safari. I keep a pinned tab in Safari with Feedly (my only pinned tab) so I can clear out a feed during interstitial time.

(Joe Buhlig) #6

This looks interesting. But is it really much different than a typical feed reader? Granted, I’m not sure I really know what I’m looking for here.

But do you use a read-it-later service at all? Instapaper or Pocket?

(Jeremy Wells, EA) #7

Negative. I used Pocket pretty solidly for about a year a few years ago, but it created another black hole of despair inbox that I couldn’t commit to regularly processing. My reading workflow starts in Feedly with checking my feeds; then, I’ll use Feedly’s Read Later feature. I also use the Safari extension to add non-Feedly sites and posts to that same list.

I also have a small backlog in my Safari Reading List, from which I try to process out a dozen or so entries at a time once or twice a week. Ideally all my reading would be in one place or another, and I find Feedly’s Read Later list slightly easier to use, but it’s really a coin flip between Feedly and Safari for me.


Not much different at all, functionally. I was thinking more in terms of whether their implementation and UX appeals to you.

(Joe Buhlig) #9

Confession: I haven’t opened a feed reader in over a week now. Maybe this is something that simply isn’t that important to me. Not sure yet.

At the same time, I think I have a tendency to read articles in the moment as opposed to waiting until later.

I tried this once. It felt weird. Not sure why.

Good to know. It would help if I knew what I wanted. :man_shrugging:

(Justin DiRose) #10

I do the same most weeks. I find it nice that my feeds pile up somewhere and I can easily scan through them for articles I want to read.

In Reeder, I just swipe left to save to Instapaper, and clear my queue usually when I’m working on the Guild newsletter. It’s not as bad as it sounds, as I only save at most 5 articles a week to read later.

The only thing I don’t Like about this workflow is Instapaper doesn’t save quotes to Drafts as well as Safari.

(Wilson Ng) #11

I do a review every once in a while to clear up a bunch of my feeds. I narrowed down my curated feeds as much a possible. I used to have six Mac podcasts, five productivity podcasts, a whole bunch of daily news podcasts, and my sports podcasts. I’ve been able to see which podcasts I’ve enjoyed listening to and unsubscribed to redundant podcasts or podcasts that I’ve lost interest in.

I also did the same with my feed reader. I use Flipboard and SmartNews for my news feeds. Slowly but surely, I’m refocusing. I love to read about a bunch of things but a lot of it is ephemeral.

I think I read a blog post somewhere about news feeds. We read the news for entertainment. But we read books to gain something. A book will last a lot longer than the newsfeed.

I’m slowly trying to remind myself to reach for my books or hit the iBooks app instead of visiting my newsfeed apps. Argh… it’s painful… :tired_face:

(Rosemary Orchard) #12

I’ve been rejigging my RSS feeds recently. I now have a “general tech” feed which I skim through, but I don’t read every article at all. I decided to pick a few feeds where I read (almost) every article and have them fed straight into my “to read” list in Pinboard and that seems to be going well - I’ve skipped a round of processing, and have less guilt about things. I also created a Workflow which deletes anything unread in my Pinboard feed which is over 21 days old unless it has another tag. This is brutal but effective - if I haven’t read it in that long then I won’t read it (or it will be outdated by then!). I’m considering turning this into a script on my server which just runs every day so I don’t do it myself - though currently I see how many articles were deleted and have been tweaking the “auto adding” based on this.

(Rosemary Orchard) #13

I confess to solving this problem with a shiny new gadget: Kindle Oasis (the new one). I love playing with the new tech, and though my PaperWhite was “fine” this device really is lovely - I can’t wait to pick it up to read! I’m toying with the idea of setting a daily reminder for ~30 minutes before I go to sleep to read, but I tend to devour books and have trouble stopping once I start! (Which is why I can never read books in the morning, I’d be late to work every day because I got distracted by my book!)

(Wilson Ng) #14

Note to self: Must not listen to @rosemary or that Sparky fella. They’re gonna cost me way too much money. :shushing_face: :wink:

(Rosemary Orchard) #15

If someone doesn’t read as much as I do (about 3 books a week, averaged out over the year) then I wouldn’t recommend this for them! Having tools that bring you joy is helpful to building habits in my experience, hence my insanity in this area. :crazy_face: