How I read the internet

This is a blog post that was stewing in my drafts folder since March. I had it half-finished when Google announced that they’d shut down Reader which pretty much took away all my motivation to keep writing. A few days ago I was asked about how I keep up with “the tech news” – and given that Reader is really going to be shutdown at the end of this month, I actually did decide to take stock.

Basically these days I have five main sources where I get my pretty constant news fix:

  • Twitter – yes, Twitter. I do follow quite a lot of people who tend to post links to interesting articles plus a bunch of bots from aggregators. It’s probably the place with the highest amount of serendipity1. I also harshly judge people who link to Techcrunch or Mashable but that seems to happen less lately.
  • My Fever installation. I don’t actually use this as a proper feed reader, I mostly use it for the ability to use it as a personalised meme tracker like Techmeme. Given that I use it like that, I subscribe to a whole bunch of feeds in it that I would never want to read but that are pretty good as source for links.2 These are mostly high-volume pages like The Verge or ReadWrite, but also feeds from aggregators like Techmeme, Reddit or Hacker News or things like the most popular items on Pinboard. Here I really get the most talked-about links and it’s usually a good overview of what is happening right now.
  • Podcasts. I listen to a lot of them. These are only those that have some tech news angle. The News is a super-fast update, which I often skip after reading the show notes.3 The Frequency is fun and often has some stuff that I didn’t read or see somewhere else. The guys from the Accidental Tech Podcast sometimes cover current events in the tech – well, mostly Apple – world, so there’s that. I’m kind of missing a more web-focused podcast at the moment, but I’m pretty sure I could find one if I actually looked.
  • Digg – Digg? Yes, Digg. It looks nice and tends to have links to well-written, longer articles.
  • (And now it gets really sad.) A feed reader. But I have no idea which one I actually want to use. Before they started to annoy me, Google Reader was my everything when it came to reading online content. First thing I opened after I started the browser. Reeder was one of the first apps I bought and always on my iPhone home screen.
    And now what?
    I actually have no clue. I could use Fever for the intended purpose, get rid of all the feeds I don’t want to read2 and sync it with Reeder on the iPhone.
    I could use Netvibes which has a nice, clean feed reader web interface – but no apparent way to sync to the phone.
    The Old Reader and Newsblur are too far away from my personal taste, so there’s a no, too.
    Feedbin or Feedwrangler would be something I’d try – I don’t mind paying for a good service – but they both accept payments only through Stripe and for some reason that doesn’t work with my card at the moment.
    I do have an installation of Tiny Tiny RSS running, but oh boy. That’s both ugly and doesn’t sync with my phone.
    So, I have no clue what to do at the moment. Digg has promised a feed reader which is supposed to sync with the same API as Google Reader – except for some tweets or posts by people with early access mentioning an apparently nice early version, I haven’t heard from that since. But those seem to be the options at the moment. I’m not even going to consider using Bloglovin even though I do of course have an account there.
    I might just pony up the 30$ for a second Fever license and use one as an aggregator and the other one as a proper feed reader. It sounds very silly but at the moment it’s the most tempting way to get back into the feed game for me.

  1. No, not the bad movie. 
  2. I know Fever has the Sparks feature for that, but it somehow never really worked for me. 
  3. The 5by5 master feed works great in Fever, by the way. 

The Day One Post Widget

Screen Shot 2013-04-25 at 6.15.23 PM

It’s pretty much perfect.

Does anyone know of a little program like this that I can wire to my blog? You bet I’d blog a whole lot more.

The Web We Lost

Anil Dash turned his blog post on the web we lost1 into a talk at the Berkman Center at Harvard:

[Direct link]

He posted a bunch of links on his blog that expand on the ideas put forth in his talk. Good stuff, all around.


  1. And which was interestingly enough really popular in the German blogosphere

Facebook Home: erste Analyse

Ich hab es mir noch nicht genauer angesehen, ich habe keine Ahnung, was es macht, ich kenne keine Details und bin erstmal dagegen.

Bin ich jetzt deutsche Qualitätspresse?

Favicon für Retina-Displays erstellen

How Foursquare is building the map of the future

Fast Company has a very interesting interview with David Blackman, Foursquare’s lead geographic infrastructure engineer:

Döödel

Readercalypse Round-Up

Listen Up

hätten sie hingehört, hätten sie uns einiges, von dem was kommt, erspart. und hätten sie auch zugehört, hätten sie sich selbst einiges, von dem was für sie kommt, erspart.

live.hackr : Listen Up

Wie man eine Google Penalty erkennt und wie man das Problem löst.

Wie man eine Google Penalty erkennt und wie man das Problem löst.

Von so SEO-Gedöns bekomme ich ja Pickel, aber wenn’s die Lara schreibt, hat es sicher Hand und Fuss.

Opera moves to Webkit

This is pretty big news if you care what happens to Browsers: 300 million users and move to WebKit. [via]

Here we go again…

GeoPlanet Data at the Internet Archive

Good news everybody! You can now download the GeoPlanet Data at the Internet Archive

Yahoo! used to have these wonderful location datasets called GeoPlanet Data / WoEID for download. At some point last year they decided to remove them from their page:

Yahoo! GeoPlanet helps bridge the gap between the real and virtual worlds by providing an open, permanent, and intelligent infrastructure for geo-referencing data on the Internet. The Geoplanet API provides a powerful tool to access WOEID’s and use them in your application. We are currently making the data non-downloadable while we determine a better way to surface the data as a part of the service. If you have a strong need for the data, please reach out to Yahoo! Geo Team . Make sure to pick Geoplanet as your area of interest.

Now they’re back, over at the Internet Archive. Gary Gale explains how that’s possible.

Buttons and Links

Given the brittleness of JavaScript’s error-handling, it seems unwise to entrust the core functionality of your page/app/site/whatever to the most fragile part of the front-end stack …especially when that same functionality is provided by a native HTML element.

When is a link not a link?

See also: You can’t create a button