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Album Cover: The Downward Spiral

"Everything's blue in this world...the deepest shade of mushroom blue."
NIN / The Downward Spiral

Posted on May 13, 2004 2:38 PM in Blogging
Warning: This blog entry was written two or more years ago. Therefore, it may contain broken links, out-dated or misleading content, or information that is just plain wrong. Please read on with caution.

I finally decided to take the news aggregator plunge today. I signed up for a Bloglines account, which I will be using fairly regularly for at least the next few weeks to keep up-to-date on the blogs I read on an everyday basis.

The main reason I chose to forego the news aggregation route for so long is that I, like Jeffrey Zeldman, appreciate the efforts that each blogger puts in to his or her design, presentation and visual style. Reading blog entries in an aggregator like Bloglines takes all the fun out of that, as every single entry looks pretty much the same. Another downside (which I've already run into once, and could potentially run into more in the future) is that there are blogs out there that don't yet adhere to the syndication methodology necessary to allow me to read all the content I'm interested in using an aggregator alone.

There are definite advantages, though. For instance, as I was setting up my subscriptions I noticed that Asa Dotzler had added an entry to his blog. I was notified almost immediately. That will definitely come in handy with blogs like Surfin' Safari and Ben Goodger's weblog, which are updated so scarcely lately that I feel like I'm almost wasting time checking them. However, I am so interested in what those two have to say (about pretty much anything), that I am very thankful for this new automatic instant notification feature.

Another advantage is that I can now subscribe to the Atom feeds that Google has made available in its new beta of Google Groups. For instance, I was able to subscribe to newsgroups like alt.fan.jenny-mccarthy, alt.music.coldplay and alt.music.pearl-jam, newsgroups of which I've been unable to keep up on for quite some time now.

One interesting thing I noticed about my personal feed is that links always show up without spaces around them when displayed in Bloglines. I didn't notice any other feeds exhibiting this behavior, so I guess I'm going to have to revisit my feed generation code. Oh, and by the way, is it bad that I subscribed to my own feed? I think that falls on the same level as sending emails to yourself (which is something I do quite often). Hmm...food for thought.

Before I go, anyone who is interested in taking a look at the list of feeds I subscribe to should take a look at my public Bloglines folder.

I'll be sharing more thoughts on Bloglines once I've had a chance to pound on it a bit more.

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