PALM DESERT, Calif.--The first demo at the DemoSpring conference here that actually made me want the product being shown was from Fliptop.
CEO Doug Camplejohn showed off two aspects of his new content subscription service. The first is a "subscribe" button that publishers can put on their sites. Like the ShareThis service that lets publishers replace dozens of social-network sharing buttons with one, Fliptop's button gives readers a lot of controls to subscribe to content on sites. They can select all content, get digests, ask for only new stories that meet a filter, and so on.
There's also a browser button that's a no-brainer for people to install before publishers get around to doing it themselves. The button, which enables users to sign up to feeds on any Web page, is especially useful for tracking content on particular topics, thanks to the filter function.
Fliptop subscriptions can be delivered to users' e-mail accounts or to an RSS reader page like Google Reader or My Yahoo.
It's a little service, but it's focused, and it looks useful.
I do hope that some improvements get layered into the service quickly, though. Subscribing to a feed requires both passing a Captcha test and replying to an e-mail check, which is a real drag for such a simple and elegant concept. The service also needs more publishing targets (I'd like to see Netvibes added). But it's a nice service that makes the RSS feeds built into many Web pages much more useful and accessible.