Now that Google Reader is on the way out is this the end for RSS feeds?
It’s been over a month now since Google announced that it was shutting down Google Reader. The closing of the much loved RSS client has caused a lot of ripples in the online community. Some say this announcement marks the end of RSS feeds and that social networking sites like Facebook, Twitter, and even Google+ have replaced them as a source of syndication. Many who support RSS (myself included) are exploring the alternatives to Google Reader in the hopes that the popularity of RSS doesn’t dwindle any further. There’s also a lot of apathy from people who never saw the value of RSS in the first place.
The announcement that Digg is working on their own RSS reader raises my hopes that there is still life in RSS feeds yet. The Digg team has been gathering a lot of user feedback to learn what people really want from a reader and I’m very excited to see what they come up with.
Another beacon of hope comes from Feedly, whose sexy UI style appeals to those with a taste for aesthetics. It also has excellent app support for mobile devices.
Another alternative that has recently come to my attention is Skimr, a slick and simple RSS reader that displays the title and the first couple of sentences so that you can skim through a heap of feeds quickly. Read more about Skimr at Sitepoint.
Personally I hope that RSS feeds will still be supported for a long time yet. It’s a great way to gather and organize informative articles in one place. It’s important to remind ourselves though, that Really Simple Syndication is still at the heart of social media sites. RSS isn’t dying, it’s just changing the way it’s delivered to us.
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