This website covers knowledge management, personal effectiveness, theory of constraints, amongst other topics. Opinions expressed here are strictly those of the owner, Jack Vinson, and those of the commenters.

Why RSS Readers Are No Good For Stowe

Stowe Boyd is also thinking about aggregators and doesn't like what he sees.  RSS Readering: Why RSS Readers Are No Good For Me (And You, Too, I Bet):

I am constantly fiddling around with RSS readers and various strategies for "RSS readering" -- William James remarked that you coin a new word at your own peril, so verbing "RSS reader" may be dangerous for me, but I do so with a plan.

I want to be an RSS reader: by which I mean to say that I would certainly rather (in theory) receive alerts about posts and -- perhaps even the posts themselves -- within some some window of time of their being posted. However, I haven't generally liked the various RSS readers I have tried. And I have tried gazillions.

Stowe doesn't want the email-like interface of Outlook plugins, nor does he want the "Pez dispenser feel" of many of the browser-based aggregators (click to read).  He goes on to describe a set of features that describes a more natural way of reading the wide array of web feeds that are available today.  Such a tool will let him say "this is interesting" and immediately research other materials: trace through links, read comments (and visit commenters), browse through tags, and even find people in my network who know something about the topic.  And one might even want to write about the topic in question.

One can almost see pieces of this in the various blog and web search feeds that are available.  But they mostly require that I wait to see how the search develops over time.  I wonder if what Findory is doing with monitoring my clicks might help over the long haul. 

Here's an example: While I am reading, I would like to have a "more like this" option that pulls together materials in my existing feeds that are related to "this."  It also goes out to the web and brings back other related materials, maybe via a tool that fires off multiple searches for me.  And it should be smart enough to ignore things I have already seen or that I already know about (one of my frustrations with blog search feeds).

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