Checking Web sites by typing in the URL feels like firing up a rickety 56k baud modem and logging on to CompuServe. It gets the job done, but really should only be used under extreme duress or nostalgia. Syndicated feeds bring the Web site to you, and when NewsGator made all its RSS clients free on Wednesday, they suddenly made a top-notch suite with tools for Windows, Mac, mobile, the Web, a podcast manager, and a Microsoft Outlook extension incredibly appealing. And by appealing, I mean you might not be able to imagine feeds the same way afterwards. It's that good.
NewsGator is making its latest consumer news readers available for free.
The updated products are FeedDemon 2.6, NetNewsWire 3.1 for the Mac, NewsGator InBox 3.0 beta, NewsGator Online, and NewsGator Go for mobile gadgets. Premium subscriptions formerly cost $19.95 or $29.95 per product.
The tools synchronize content fed to the Web, as well as to desktop and handheld devices including the iPhone, BlackBerrys, and those running Windows Mobile.
Each account will include features that were formerly offered only in premium editions. Users who have paid for NewsGator products on or after December 9 can request … Read more
Google's RSS reader (newbie's guide here) got some handy updates last night. The most interesting of the bunch is a new recommendations system that will suggest feeds you might enjoy based on two things:
1. Feeds you're already subscribed to in Google Reader 2. Your Google Web history, including things you've searched for or sites you've visited from any Google search.
The recommendations show up on Reader's home page, and let you know how many subscribers each feed has to help gauge its popularity. You can also preview the feed before having to subscribe … Read more
A whole heap of Web 2.0 companies are competing for recognition of their phone-to-Web and Web-to-phone services. Most are mainly media storage, sharing, or manipulation companies like Thumbplay and 3Guppies, that have added a proprietary push-to-phone service to make their brand do more. ShoZu, a 2007 Webware 100 winner, is one of the few I've seen whose actual goal is to push content to your phone and from it, using as many partner services as they possibly can.
Today ShoZu announced a partnership with Flickr that lets users subscribe to friends' individual media feeds. A lot has changed … Read more
Mobile app publishers are obsessed with creating the fast, flawless mechanism to deliver content to mobile phones. That's great news for users, whose choices for accessing content through apps, browsers, or feed readers grow daily. Viigo for BlackBerry and Windows Mobile 5 and 6 is a new contender. See the screenshot-by-screenshot blow in this Viigo slide show.
Incidentally, I've used Ilium Screen Capture (review) to nab my images. It's a great little program for Windows Mobile.
The latest episode of CNET Mailbag posted yesterday, in case you haven't seen it. Also, we just shot some hi-larious footage for next week's episode, which you will not want to miss. It'll post next Wednesday. Click here (or on the image) to watch it. Yeah, yeah, yeah, embedding. It's coming.
But hey, awesome CNET TV news: RSS feeds are back! Mailbag, sadly, does not yet have a working feed (do NOT be fooled by what seems to be the correct URL) because I am waiting for a "node" to be "deployed." … Read more
If you're looking for another way to read Web content on your mobile phone, there's a new solution called Mippin that will let you browse and sort through popular Web feeds about as easily as you can using a desktop RSS browser. The service was created to tackle the problem of so many sites not offering a "mobile" version for cell phone users.
Mippin serves a variety of feeds, which can be browsed and sorted by genre. You can also search by URL, and the service will do its best to convert the content into something … Read more
Facebook has several layers of functionality that make it worth using, but my favorite is the once-controversial news feed. Why? I simply don't have time to check each of my friend's profiles for what's new, and the feed does a pretty great job at that without all the legwork or annoying e-mail notifications. FriendFeed is a new service that takes the idea of a news feed and extends it beyond the social network into other social services you're a part of. There are more than 20 to pick and choose from, including social news services like … Read more
"You may be an Olympic-level jumper when it comes to leaping from reading your RSS feeds to reading your e-mail, but two Web sites now offer a way to eliminate the wasted time switching from one app to the other. RssFwdand R-Mail drive your feeds directly into your email, simplifying the need to have two separate programs open, or at least two tabs with Gmail and Google Reader." Trying to reduce the differences between reading e-mail and reading RSS feeds is a big but important task for those of us who jump from one to the other--in the way it's important for a jackrabbit to avoid a mountain lion. RssFwd and R-Mail are two Web-based solutions that drive your feeds directly into your e-mail, eliminating the need to have two separate programs open (or two tabs, in the case of Gmail and Google Reader).
This morning Netvibes is launching Premium Universes, a new program for businesses to get their own branded start page that can be integrated into their existing site, without jettisoning users off elsewhere. The intent is for site users to get the same functionality they'd get at Netvibes.com, while at the site owner's page. Site owners in turn, can place as much advertising outside of the Netvibes page as they'd like, supplementing the use of the service--and hopefully their revenue.
In terms of features, there's really nothing new from the Netvibes Universe program that launched in mid-April. … Read more