Google Chrome lacks native RSS reading and handling, for the moment. There's a nifty webapp, however, that can fill some of the void for users of web-based feed readers. The applet at RAMisp.org's page is tailor-made for Google Chrome users who use Google Reader, Pageflakes, Netvibes, or My Yahoo for their RSS reading. Let's assume, though, that a halfway savvy coder could modify RAMisp's page to incorporate other readers (and please post a link if you host it!). To use the service, head to feeds.ramisp.org in your Chrome browser, then drag the "Auto-Detect RSS" bookmark onto your bookmarks bar (if you don't see a bar, activate it with Control+B). You can also grab a "View RSS Feed" if you want to see a site's feed in your browser. Head to any page with an RSS feed available, hit your "Auto-Detect RSS" link, and you'll land on a page with the feed displayed and auto-subscription links at the top:
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In the mid-year slump when there's absolutely nothing new on television (except the Olympics), it's time to start watching the web—and you need the right tool to do just that. The free, cross-platform internet video player Miro can automatically download online video series via RSS feed or BitTorrent, play almost any format you throw at it, and keep track of what you've watched and what's new and queued up for you. More and more independent producers are putting out fabulous video content on the web, but keeping up with it by visiting your favourite video hosting web site or in your regular feed reader can be almost impossible—but setting up Miro is like getting TiVo for web video. Let's take a look at how to subscribe to free internet television with Miro.
Windows only: Portable application NFReader is a no-frills feed reader that fits on your thumb drive. Even though it eschews a wide feature set in favour of a tiny footprint and minimalist interface, NFReader has the basics covered. Import your subscription list via OPML files or manually add feeds in the reader. View individual articles in either basic text or HTML format. If you're looking for an absolutely spartan feedreader without any clutter or feature bloat, NFReader's for you. NFReader is a free download for Windows only.
Windows/Mac/Linux (Firefox): Brief, an in-browser RSS reader for Firefox, adds a clean Google Reader-type feed reading interface to your browser, and makes Firefox's default "Live Bookmarks" system far more useful. The stand-out feature for GReader users is the starring system that lets you tag posts for later viewing, but I also like the "X" boxes put on each post—instead of marking a post "read" and scrolling past it, you can actually remove it from your view. It's a lot like Sage, but with a more robust set of features and customisation. Brief is a free download and works wherever Firefox 2 and 3 beta do.
Newsreaders are a blessing for anyone who wants to stay on top of the constant flow of information available on the web, but if you're not careful your feedreader can get so clogged and disorganised that you lose many of the benefits of RSS. Blogger GenuineChris details how he combatted this situation using fewer folders organised by quality—like A-List, B-List, etc. At the end of the day this strategy isn't groundbreaking, but it got us wondering: How do you organise your newsreader? Let's hear what helps you stay king of your RSS mountain in the comments. Fewer Folders Means You Get More Out of Reader
When it comes to reading feeds for a job or need-to-know informatoin, it's hard to beat the (unofficial) reigning champions of the web and desktop, Google Reader and NewsGator's (now free!) products. But sometimes you might just want to run through a lot of content quickly, with no read/unread stress to remind you of your email inbox. For that kind of browsing, Alertle, a new AJAX-based feed reader, might be just the right thing. It comes jam-packed with pre-sets in a range of categories, and it moves nearly as quick as Reader (even with seemingly wider support for embedded video and audio). Alertle doesn't bother marking posts as read, so it's more a tool for seeing what's new around the web than hitting a goal. The big drawbacks are non-support of Internet Explorer and a hard-to-grok sign-up interface (check the upper-right corner), but Alertle makes for an interesting addition to the growing stable of worthy feed readers. Alertle
Web-based feed aggregator Google Reader has made two improvements to its interface, one Web 2.0-ish and the other pretty darn useful. The change Reader users will really appreciate is the ability to simply grab newly-added feeds and place them in their folders—no more clicking through menu bars, which really helps when doing multi-feed updates. The other new addition is recommendations, which can be found in the "Discover" link and points you to feeds based on your current list, your search history and your location. As you can see, Reader probably knows you better than you'd think.
If you've got too many feeds and not enough time, productivity site GearFire suggests that you prioritise your feeds by level of urgency; i.e., time-sensitive. Even when you are rushed, there are some feeds whose content may only be applicable to a short time-span. For example, my subscription to Woot! And Giveaway of the Day are both daily deals, and therefore need to be read before other feeds. Recognizing what is urgent and what is not can help you work when you need, without constantly thinking of your feeds. This is a simple task that can save you some reading time; for more information on how to read feeds productively, check out how to get good with Google Reader.