Does anyone else miss Google Reader? I was so sad when they shuttered the service, I miss it terribly. I’ve searched high and low for a replacement, but been mostly disappointed with the alternatives.
When they first announced it would be discontinued, I was hopeful about a site I discovered called The Old Reader and I immediately signed up and started playing with it.
Well, honestly…it WAS a decent replacement for Google Reader. The only problem that soon became apparent was that the couple of incredibly ambitious developers who set out to make a viable service were not quite prepared to handle an influx of new users and data migration from Google’s service over to their own.
They allowed you to import your subscriptions from Google Reader and it didn’t take long before they were swamped, I’m sure. I wish Google wouldn’t cancel their popular services that so many people have come to rely on, it’s not the right way to go about things.
As someone else suggested in the Google Product Forums, they could have simply released it as open source and kept everyone happy. But of course not!
At any rate, the developers over at The Old Reader eventually made an announcement in which they admitted that they just didn’t have the resources to handle such a huge volume of new users and they were having trouble with their servers and that sort of thing.
I think they were bought by a larger company shortly thereafter, or at least that’s what I recall reading. In the greater scheme of things, this is probably good because they were not going to be able to continue supporting it otherwise if I remember right.
I haven’t really spent much time there since then, I just hate having to remember to actively navigate to a site I’m not used to going to in order to get my RSS feed updates. It’s a serious pain and I eventually just stopped using it altogether.
Some time ago, I had discovered these free generators (some are gone now though) that were advertised as RSS to PDF tools. They would take an RSS feed URL and spit out a PDF of the newest items from that feed for you to read in the future.
I thought this was a pretty cool concept and still do. The reason I’m blogging about this today is that I now have such a tool available for my readers for free, which you are all welcome to use.
While it doesn’t have a download button for the PDF it generates, if you’re using Chrome then you should see an option to save it by clicking on the button at the bottom of the screen when you are viewing the PDF in the browser when it returns the results.
Generate your own PDF Newspaper here.
So what do you guys think of RSS? Do you miss Google Reader? It seems to me that RSS is one of those very strange and uncommon types of technologies that never really took on beyond a group of semi-savvy web enthusiasts. What’s your take on it?