LearnA simple tip for managing the RSS madness

writes on December 8, 2006

I’ve got a really simple tip that will help you with your RSS feeds.

Here is the problem: none of us have time to read all of our feeds. I’m subscribed to around 60 RSS feeds and I rarely have time to read all of them.

Lisa, our editor at Vitamin, had a great idea: Create a folder of the top 5 – 10 blogs that are very important to you. The ones that are must-reads. Call the folder “* High Priority” (the asterisk makes sure it appears at the top of your feeds).

Every time you read your RSS feeds, read these first. That way, if you don’t have time to read the rest, you simply select everything else, “Mark as Read” and move on with your day.

You’ll feel better, waste less time reading stuff that doesn’t really matter and become more effective.

0 Responses to “A simple tip for managing the RSS madness”

  1. I use my reader (Google) for the important stuff, and my personalized home page (also Google, for now) to subscribe to the stuff that I don’t need to check as often.

    Works great!

  2. I used this approach initially, but I managed to evolve into an approach that has another advantage.

    I have two computers, one for work and one at home, and they both use NetNewsWire synced with NewsGator.

    One of my groups is for RSS feeds relevant to my work. I’d like this one to be on top there but not on my other computer, but I don’t want to manually sort or have some sort of elaborate system, so I just use “View > Sort Subscriptions By > Attention” and the application tracks how often I view each feed.

    The group for work is on top at work and at the bottom at home where I never use it. Also, the rest of the groups developed a natural sorting so that groups of feeds that are tangentially related to my work end up near the top at work. Thus when I get through all my work feeds, it’s easy to end up reading something to keep up with new developments in my profession. And at home, I get my friends’ feeds and the goofing-off ones. Win-win!

  3. Hey Ryan –

    As I mentioned to you at Web2.0 recently, we’re working at outbrain (www.outbrain.com) on a platform for personalized sorting of RSS feeds. I hope we’ll have some neat solutions for this problem soon…


  4. I thought you were supposed to be at the cafe having a coffee on Fridays (4 day week and all…)


  5. There’s a nice little hack that uses GMail search filters to only grab the important feed items — I wrote up a little article about it the other day (http://dieter.vox.com/library/post/grss.html).

    I’ve been using this for a few months now, and I’m very pleased.

  6. I’m already doing this, using the “playlists” feature of Bloglines.com.

    With Bloglines’ playlists, I can group my feeds in different ways, for example by their language or by their importance.

    Best regards,

  7. Ryan Carson on December 8, 2006 at 2:53 pm said:

    Jordan – nice trick. Thanks for sharing.

  8. Jordan Glasner on December 8, 2006 at 2:50 pm said:

    I use more or less the same approach, except I prefix the folders with numbers. This way I can have a few different priority folders.

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