Goodbye Google Reader, Hello Feedly

/ Geek Stuff /

I believe that it’s pretty obvious that I’m a geek and one of the things that I like to do as a geek is to stay up to date on the latest geeky news. In particular, I get most of my information from io9.com, which is a really amazing blog that posts a ton of science fiction and fantasy content. They usually post around 30 articles each week day. No, I don’t read them all. In fact, I probably only read one or two a day, but I scan the headlines and I stay informed about my favorite topics.

In addition, I especially enjoy following the blogs of authors Patrick Rothfuss and John Scalzi. Those two guys share a lot of interesting tidbits about their professional and day-to-day lives, but the main reason I like their blogs is because they can both also be very amusing and seem like genuinely good people.

For quite awhile, I’ve used Google Reader as a way to collect and peruse these blogs and other news sources. I like Google Reader because it’s simple and it’s easy for me to keep track of what I’ve read and mark items for later reading. For several years now, Google Reader has been the main way that I get content from blogs and similar web sites.

Unfortunately, Google announced yesterday that they will be retiring Google Reader on July 1, 2013. Google basically claims that they want to focus their efforts on new and exciting frontiers, rather than tried-and-true technologies like RSS, despite a loyal user base. Most likely, it wasn’t making them any money so they cut it.

At first, I was really pissed. I mean, I really like Google Reader. But then I discovered Feedly, which is a news aggregrator that can actually sync with Google Reader. Feedly is more of an app than a web site, with availability in iOS, Android, Kindle, Chrome, Firefox, and Safari. That means that you can use it in your desktop browser (assuming that you aren’t an Opera or IE user) or on most tablets and phones. They claim that by signing up for Feedly before July 1, you can make the transition seamlessly.

I thought that sounded pretty good so I decided to give it a try. Now, I’ve only used Feedly for a grand total of about 20 minutes, but I’m already really impressed. I got the app for Chrome, which is really nice. There are a lot of different options so you can really customize the way that content is presented. As a web designer, it also has a lot of visual appeal. They do a great job making the content look great.

I also got the app for my Kindle Fire. I can honestly say that as much as I like the Google app, the Kindle app is even cooler. It still has a lot of great display options, but it also has a really intuitive interface that allows you to really enjoy the experiencing of reading through your feeds.

I still need to play with it a bit, but I’m excited because I think that Feedly may actually be a huge improvement over Google Reader. I definitely recommend checking it out.