Bloglines

Inspired by ravings from Yoz, Phil, Quinn and probably Danny, I took at look at Bloglines this morning. Bloglines is an RSS aggregator which, because it’s web-based, gives you the freedom to have access to your daily reading from any machine. On the surface, this is a solution to a problem that I have, which is keeping my news reading in sync over two machines, but in practice, I hated it.
My initial impression after registering was simply “urgh”. I would be being kind if I said that the interface had all the benefits of simplicity. In reality, it’s so simple that it borders on the primitive. It’s like something from the stone ages of the web. Yes, it obeys all the usability maxims – you can certainly get to what you want to do fast – but the key thing about any application is that it should engage you, make you want to use it, not look like something your accountant would code.
Then there’s the features – or rather, lack of them. It reads RSS. That’s it. There’s no fancy community stuff, no posting to blogs, no search, nothing – in short, none of the features that could easily be done that would make it worth using.
So I won’t be giving up NetNewsWire any time soon. As a solution to the techno-nomad who never uses the same machine twice Bloglines is bare-able. But for anyone else? Forget it.

  • http://www.gyford.com/ Phil

    Weird… it didn’t even occur to me that such features were “missing”. Bloglines does everything I want, and everything I used NetNewsWire Lite for – reading RSS feeds. I can click a link to post comments on the sites.

    And the thing I like most about it, over NNWL, is that I can view older entries from sites, rather than whatever’s currently in the feeds. So it doesn’t matter if a miss a few days of reading a busy site, because it’ll all be there.

    It could look prettier, but I really don’t miss NNWL at all (which surprises me).