Google Reader

I haven’t had a reason to use an RSS reader until the recently. But as I’ve tried (in vain) to keep up with more and more websites and information sources it just seems to be a tool that has to be used.
My impression of bloglines didn’t make me scream USE ME, mainly because there wasn’t an obvious way to tag stuff for later retrieval (that begs the question, if I’m a cataloger and am already being paid to professionaly tag resources, why the heck would I want to do it in my spare time). On the other hand I probably overlooked something in bloglines.

So appears Google Reader. I’ve been using it for about two months now and I like having a single authentication with gmail and the google personalized homepage. My observations criticisms:

  1. Auto sorting is odd. I’m assuming that they are mining priority, tags and what not to get your “ranking” but it just isn’t working in a logical way for me. Date is better I guess, and the norm but I was expecting some google magic.
  2. It won’t just suck an opml (a list of rss feeds) from a website, you have to save the xml then pass it back as a file. Kind of clunky, but I assume they’ll change that around where you can just pass a URI for an opml and the reader will grok it.
  3. Searching for feeds is a breeze, I guess google has search down pat.
  4. The feeds out just work. They are in Atom format. I’m not sure of the vagaries in the syndication format standards and the pros and cons but it really seems like Atom is the way to go?
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