The Internet has been nominated for a Nobel Peace Prize, so you know you want to read it. Of course, you realize that going to every single website on the internet is a really inefficient way to actually attempt to read the whole thing, that’s why the RSS protocol was invented to make reading the web easier.
Introducing the Feeds in the Cloud
I have been an avid user of Google Reader as I really enjoyed the sharing functions that Google has built into the product. The one thing I did not enjoy about Google Reader, it may seem a small thing to some, was the aesthetic choices of the design time. I find the interface to be downright ugly.
From the Clouds back to the Desktop
So, I began to look for a Desktop Application that would fit the gap, and that is where I found NetNewsWire. NetNewsWire is made by NewsGator. They have a fancy pay version, which I am certain has a couple extra bells and whistles hooked into the app, but the free version is just fine by me. The Ads in the free version are hardly intrusive at all, you might not even really notice them.
There are a couple of really nice features of this news client. One is that you can open the original page of the story in another tab, this keeps you from having several windows of different applications flying around and lets you do what you want to do which is read the news.
The second, it might be first in my book, is the ability in the Preferences to select a different default theme for reading the content; it comes with a nice number of different themes and if you are handy with the CSS you can write your own.
You can save posts to Instapaper, add them to Delicious, or send them to a blogging application. I have even found an AppleScript that let’s you tweet articles; quite handy for sharing. You can even save posts directly to your computer as HTML documents which can be read in any browser.
And back to the Clouds and more…
Those are all good things, but the absolutely most important feature that NetNewsWire has built into it, is it uses the Google Reader framework to sync your feeds. You can determine how frequently it fetches new feeds. Personally, I set mine to get new batches every four hours otherwise all I will do is read news. This synchronization feature is perfect for reading news on your smartphone or on the Google Reader website when at the library or in the Apple store. This will make sure that you get credit for seeing that part of the Internet once and you only have to return if you really liked it.
And to the mobile
NewsGator also makes an iPhone app version of NetNewsWire and it is available in both Free and Premium versions. Having used a large number of RSS apps on my iPhone, this is the first one that has any sort of responsiveness that I expect as well as that special magic that comes with using the Google Reader as a backend.
The layout is nice and clean and the developer has taken special care to write responsiveness into the application that can handle a very large number of feeds and posts, particularly as it seems that some news junkies treat their feedreaders with a heavy hand.
So, you can see that the two applications or the same application on two different platforms provides a continuous user experience as you access the information and data which is flowing through the internet. Using NetNewsWire in this manner, it will not be long before the Internet is part of you.
Have you used NetNewsWire?