rss_reading

Image via European Parliament (altered)

I use FlowReader every day at work to help me with content curation and keep up with news in the industry.

Using our own product encourages the team to honestly evaluate FlowReader, and it’s one of the best ways for us to learn how to do better.

In other words, we eat our own dog food.

When I first started working on FlowReader, I’d never used an RSS reader regularly.

I was familiar with the technology, but I’d never used a reader more than a couple times.

A little over a year later, I’m an RSS convert. To be honest, I can’t really imagine my work day without using a reader.

Have you ever thought about switching to an RSS reader?

If so, here’s a list of reasons why RSS rocks and helps make online reading easier.

#1 Curate your own reading list.

The internet is like an oversized library that never stops adding new books to its shelves. On one hand, it’s great because you can find endless amounts of information in a matter of seconds, but it also means the amount of noise is constantly growing.

With all the choices on the internet, it’s not always easy to find quality content. You need a way to keep track of good stuff when you find it and that’s where RSS comes in handy. With RSS, you can be your own curator.

As you find awesome sources, curate a reading list that’s filled with content you actually want to read. Instead of having to chase updates around the internet, you’ll just have to find time to read all your new items.

tip1

#2 Control your information.

Instead of dealing with a real-time stream of information and updates like you would on Twitter, you can pick and choose which updates you want to receive. RSS goes beyond just delivering text-only news articles – you can also view visual, video, and audio content.

In addition, RSS lets you subscribe or unsubscribe from feeds whenever you want. There’s no need to trust an unsubscribe link in a newsletter or sign up personally for updates. You can be more deliberate and target the exact kind of content you’d like to receive instead of having to trust someone else to make that decision for you.

#3 Don’t miss what you want to read.

Another great part of RSS is I’m able to choose when I want to view my updates. It’s not limited by when they are posted on Twitter or another website. Even though RSS updates in real time, you have the luxury of being able to read them whenever you have time in your day.

Plus, you have fewer updates to get through since they are only from sources you’ve selected. This makes it easier to see all the posts from a site and stay up-to-date.

tip2

#4 Organize and categorize your news.

Organization is also key to understanding why an RSS reader is worthwhile. If you take the initial time to set up your subscriptions in folders, you’ll get a lot more about of your reader experience. Many users like to set up their folders or categories by topic (e.g. Design, Web Development, News, etc.), but there’s a lot of different possibilities.

For example, you could organize your RSS feeds by the order and priority you normally read them. If you’re interested in learning how to organize your reader, check out our post for more ideas.

#5 Everything is in one place.

Gathering information in one place is kind of a FlowReader mantra, but I’ll say it again.With all the sites that are out there demanding your attention, it’s nice to have a tool that brings information to you.

It’s one of the reasons I love RSS so much. It’s like having someone go around and personally send you new stuff from all of your favorite websites and blogs. It just makes life a whole lot easier.

 What are your thoughts on RSS and what other tools do you use to keep up with your daily content? 

Share with us in the comments or on Facebook. You can also tweet to us directly, @flow_reader.