Why we need Google Reader

Posted by in Technology

Google Reader

Regular folks won’t even notice this or – worse – won’t even have a clue about what it’s all about.

Today Google announced the End Of Life of google reader who’s been around 2005. For the regular folks reading me (are there any? 🙂 ) Reader was a tool to syndicate all your favorite RSS feeds and manage your reading lists. The core feature from my prospective was the ability to keep track of what had been read and what had not.

It had dozens frontends aside from its own web which I rarely used, my favorites being Reeder on ios/mac and Newsrob on Android which helped me to scroll through a mass of info (several hundreds news a day in eclectic categories such as tech, venture, gadgets, drones, scuba…) and hand pick at fast pace the ones that seemed relevant to *me*.

There have been plenty of hyped products such as Flipboard or Pulse trying to reinvent the way we consume news feeds by creating a nice looking dynamic magazine. In my opinion, while those products did reach their goal in terms of design and experience it’s a complete failure in terms of posts-per-minute you can process. There’s no better tool than then user’s brain to pick  what’s relevant for him and the only way to streamline the process is to display efficiently the data he needs to decide wether he want or not to actually read a given post.

I do realize that my way of consuming news (few hundred feeds generating ~ 500 posts a day to scroll through) may be old-school but there’s no alternative solution. Twitter has ended up being a 140character dump where you can’t hope to follow all the activity, facebook is less aggressive in terms of amount of data shown but then you miss way to much stuf…

Anyway time to look for alternatives… but I guess I’ll just have to follow the existing app ecosystem and hope they’ll adjust before Reader reaches EOL… So long Google Reader !