A few months prior to the Google announcement that Reader was going to cease operation I migrated my collection of RSS feeds over to NewsBlur. Mostly as I was getting annoyed at the Reader interface plus it gave me a chance to remove those abandoned blogs.
After using the site for a few months I decided that an annual fee wasn’t too much of a hurdle as I had first thought plus the interface was good enough that I was fast approaching the Limit of feeds you could have on a free account.
But why pay when there are many other offerings on the market?
Keeping track of blogs and posts is a time consuming process and using a Feed Aggregator is one of the best ways to try and digest them.
Yes there are many options, I could have easily signed-up to another web-based application such as Feedly, Bloglines, Feedspot, Pulse, FriendFeed or The Old Reader, or perhaps a mobile app like Flipboard.
For me the service was actually far more than I expected, the ability to search historical posts and save them for reading later. The ability to structure blog in a way you wanted that best suited you. Multiple layouts and formats meant that all my resolutions didn’t result
So NewsBlur, what is it?
The basic version of the site allows you to get a feed for the system but RSS feeds, the number of posts shown and the refresh rate are all limited. This isn’t too bad if you only follow a handful of sites, who don’t update to frequently. There is also iOS and Android applications freely available plus you could build your own via the API if you really wanted.
The design allows for nested folders and folder level viewing, this means that for all the new RSS feeds I started following as part of NBI2014 they have their own folder called NBI2014 nested under a NBI parent folder. I can drill down to view a persons blog posts or I can select a folder and see all the posts from blog either under or nested under that folder.
One of the nice feature is there are a stack of Browser plugins that allow you to use unread counts etc, and a bookmarklet that you can use to add the RSS feed of the site you are currently visiting (this can be found under the Goodies and Extras menu option at the top of the panel).