Wednesday, September 21, 2005

Findory RSS reader, part II

Findory just finished adding a Bloglines-like feed reader to our personalized news site. It is available on our My Favorites page.

Like most RSS readers, you can import any RSS feed and any OPML list of feeds. You also can easily import your entire list of Bloglines subscriptions by entering your public username or your private username and password.

Like some other RSS readers, we show which feeds have new articles, the new articles in each feed, and which articles you have clicked on.

Unlike many other RSS readers, we're fast, very fast.

Unlike all other RSS readers, Findory shows related articles for every feed, surfacing interesting news articles and weblog posts that you wouldn't have found on your own.

Unlike all other RSS readers, there's no need to laboriously click and skim, click and skim. It's easy to find the most interesting articles. Try clicking "My Top Stories" to see recommended recent articles from your favorite feeds picked based on the articles you read in the past. It's the most important, most recent, most interesting articles surfaced for you from your favorite feeds.

Unlike all other RSS readers, everything you read changes your Findory front page, helping you discover articles from sources you didn't even know existed.

Unlike all other RSS readers, Findory works well for people with hundreds or even thousands of feeds. One of our main test cases was good ol' Robert Scoble and his 1029 feeds. Hope you like it, Robert!

Try it out! If you're a Bloglines user, import your Bloglines subscriptions. If you use another feed reader, import OPML with all your favorite RSS feeds.

If you have any questions or comments, please feel free to write me anytime at glinden@findory.com. I'd enjoy hearing from you.

See also my previous post, "A Findory feed reader".

18 comments:

Anonymous said...

I tried to import my public Bloglines feeds (user nicclas) and that worked ok. However, your feedreader seems to handle (among others) swedish chars differently. I dont know if the feeds I read are ISO-8859-1 or UTF-8 encoded, but the text your reader output to the browser shows corrupt swedish chars in titles, and seems to remove swedish chars from the [description] part of the feed.

cheers
nicclas@gmail.com

Dimitar Vesselinov said...

Greg, it didn't work for me:

"Could not import Bloglines Subscriptions from divedi
No content was returned"

"Could not import Bloglines Subscriptions.
Server response: 500 read timeout"

Greg Linden said...

Hi, nicclas. Unfortunately, our international support is poor. Our personalization algorithms do some text analysis in some cases that depends on features of the specific language, so it is not trivial for us to support non-English languages.

Sorry but, while we're still only a tiny two man team, it will be impossible for us to offer support for Swedish and other languages. Internationalization is our top priority if we do get the resources to expand our staff.

Greg Linden said...

Hi, Dimitar. Huh, it appears your Bloglines profile is very large and Bloglines performance seems very slow this morning. Just trying to access your profile in my browser at

http://bloglines.com/public/divedi

took Bloglines tens of seconds to respond. Whew.

Because of the performance issues on Bloglines side, you may have to export your public feed using the link at

http://bloglines.com/export?id=divedi

and then manually cut and paste the OPML into Findory. This way, even if Bloglines takes a very long time to respond, you'll still get your hands on your OPML and can hand it off to Findory.

Sorry for the hassle.

Anonymous said...

Ok, Greg, but I do not think its a question of i18n, just a question of how the RSS code is read and outputed. Even such a "simple" RSS aggregator as http://devlog.gregarius.net/ can handle both UTF-8 and ISO-8859-1 endcoded feeds. I think that it is a very minor problem for you get the correct output also of feeds with Swedish/Danish/Norwegian/German chars, if you want to.

Ok, if your algorithms for finding similar blogs and alike are depending on that the feeds are in English, but I can live without that feature for my feeds in Swedish, as long as it works for the English ones.

cheers
nicclas@gmail.com / www.frisim.com

kewlio said...

bloglines import is nice, worked easily.. 1st thought: i like when the posts are spruced with pictures but findory filters that

Greg Linden said...

You're right, nicclas. I was focusing on the bigger goal, offering full Findory personalization for i18n feeds. But, you're right that we could offer more limited support for non-English feeds, displaying them on Findory, but not showing related articles or using them for personalization.

It's a great idea. We might be able to do that quickly. Thanks again, nicclas!

Greg Linden said...

Thanks, Dan, it's a good point. We only show text-only excerpts for feeds, no full text, no pictures, no HTML.

We do that because we want people to go to the weblog or news site to read the full content. We want to drive traffic to the people who originally produced the content so everyone is happy.

In addition, when you click through on an excerpt, you give Findory more information to further personalize the Findory front page, helping you discover articles and sources you wouldn't have found using any other feed reader. I'd be interested to hear if you see Findory surfacing news you didn't know about.

Thanks again, Dan.

Bill said...

The RSS reader looks great. A big feature that seems missing, though, is a "Subscribe with Findory" bookmarklet. I added about 98% of my bloglines subscriptions with their bookmarklet and I can't really imagine managing my RSS feeds without one.

Great job with the website.

Greg Linden said...

Thanks, Bill! Glad you like it!

A bookmarklet is a great idea! We'll look into it.

Jonah said...

I may be speaking only for myself, but not having full posts makes the service unattractive. The service is fast though, but I wont use it until full posts are available.

Greg Linden said...

I understand, Jonah. Full posts are nice.

But next time you're feeling overwhelmed by slogging through the tens or hundreds of feeds in your other feeds reader, I hope you will reconsider Findory.

With Findory's personalization, the interesting news bubbles to the top based on what you read in the past. When you read a blog on Findory, important posts are highlighted. On the home page, interesting articles are selected just for you, pulled from thousands of news and blogs.

There's much less of the boring and laborious clicking and skimming that you are forced to do with normal feed readers.

Carlo said...

Nice service, I've just posted about it (http://spaghettitech.blogspot.com). The OPML import from Bloglines works like a charm!
The only improvement I could think of are:

- Full text feeds;
- Image display;
- Folders to organize the feeds (and maybe tags);

keep up the good work.

jonah said...

Greg-
My specific use for a feedreader is to maintain LABlogs.com where I keep tabs on around 600 local blogs. It's actually easier to slog through the full posts than having them cut off and me having to click an addtional link to see if there is something worth citing.

Like I said, it is a personal preference, but why not give the option for full or truncated posts? I often unsubscribe from blogs that only serve up summary posts in their feeds.

If I could get full posts with the speed that you are serving up the partial posts, I'd dump Bloglines in a second. Their service often times out if I have more than a couple hundred unread posts.

I know that I'm not the average feedreader user, but I have mastered the speed-reading-while-scrolling-by-hitting-the-space-bar technique.

Mike said...

Hi Greg,

I've been checking out findory for a few months now but haven't quite been able to tear myself away just yet. The ability to import bloglines favorites is AWESOME, and may be one crucial step closer.

One feature I find missing in Findory is the ability to display pictures. There are some blogs i subscribe to (eg. Engadget, Download Squad) where I just skim the images to see what looks interesting.

I noticed that trying to slog through all the text in Findory for these posts that I used to skim on Bloglines is much more difficult due to the lack of images. There's just too much text on the page.

I know it could be difficult to cram images from posts into the existing layout, but i think it might be worthwhile if it could be made to work.

Thanks for a great service.

pipka said...

I may be speaking only for myself, but not having full posts makes the service unattractive. The service is fast though, but I wont use it until full posts are available.

Rakhesh said...

Just checking -- has the findory bookmarklet mentioned in the comments above been made yet? Was searching the net for a bookmarklet like that and found this post.

Greg Linden said...

Hi, Rakhesh. Sorry, I haven't been able to do the bookmarklet yet. Not sure when I'll be able to get to it.

If you're interested in other services that let you mark web pages with a bookmarklet and see recommended pages, you might check out Spurl.net and StumbleUpon.