switching off of bloglines
when i'm doing one of my internet cafe check-ins, reading my email and updating my blog (along with uploading the latest pictures to flickr and downloading any new Lost episodes), if i have any time to burn i usually read my latest RSS feeds on Bloglines.
however... bloglines has gotten pretty stodgy lately for me. no new features have emerged that have significantly improved my experience with their product, i hate having to log into a 3rd site beyond yahoo and google every time i go to an internet cafe computer, and so i finally started checking out my feed-reading alternatives from yahoo and google.
first off, i tried out the new Yahoo! Mail beta with built-in Yahoo! Messenger (VERY handy for those cafes that won't let me install the Yahoo! Messenger application... i'm very grateful that they added this feature) and RSS feed reader. after i added all of my favorite feeds into it, i gave it a try. it's really convenient having my RSS feeds and email in one place, but the lack of ability to organize my RSS feeds, and the plane-jane appearance of the RSS feed content in the reader didn't get me very excited. but still, better than bloglines. so that was nice.
secondly, i tried google reader. the last time i tried this product right after it came out, i thought it was one of the worst products that google has ever shipped. it felt clunky and awkward, and just not a very fun user experience. it actually felt like made reading RSS feeds LESS efficient than just going to the websites themselves and reading their content. so i abandoned it and never tried it since that first initial exploration.
when i went back to use google reader this time, i was shocked at how much it had improved. it's an elegantly designed web application with a lot of thought given to just making it simple and easy to organize my feeds, and really dedicating itself to presenting the content i want to see in the best possible way. when i checked out the google reader team's blog, it's very clear that they're strongly committed to continuing to add lots of cool features to this product.
the end result of all this? i'll never use bloglines again, at least until they do a major redesign of their product. and even then, the hassle of having to log into Yet Another Site is another hit against them. i'll start using yahoo! mail more for light feed reading and the HTML version of yahoo! messenger. and i'll start using google reader every time i go online to check my RSS feeds. if you're using bloglines now, definitely give google reader a try!