Lots of action this week in the syndication-feed technology space: NetNewsWire, Bloglines, Atom, J2ME, dig it. I tried to squeeze it into a paragraph but it just sprawled and sprawled, so you’ll have come to ongoing for the full dump. [Update: Bloglines is being bad.]

NetNewsWire Beta · It’s out; I’ve been using the alphas for some time now and anyone who already uses NNW should upgrade soonest, it’s just better in a bunch of ways. And faster. Fast is good. Anybody with a Mac but without NNW, take my word for it, go get it, you’ll be happy you did.

Crunchy Bloglines Goodness · Today we heard about the Bloglines Web Services offerings, which look well-designed and clever to me. I tried them out in a terminal window using the curl command and making up URIs, and yep, they’re clean and fast. The barrier to entry for this REST-done-right stuff is just so absurdly low, I just can’t see any other approach being competitive.

I also see that Bloglines is going to work with NetNewsWire and a couple of Windows feedreaders to aggregate feed polling and to allow subscription syncing. What self-evidently great ideas.

The syncing is particularly handy; when anyone asks me how to get into newsreading, I usually say “start with Bloglines” even though I don’t use it myself because NNW (like, I assume, the Windows & Linux equivalents) is so blazingly fast, which is important to a professional news junkie like me. With the syncing, I can use NNW most of the time and bloglines whenever I’m at a public terminal or away from my own laptop. Win-win-win, I’d say.

Oops! As I failed to notice but Joe Gregorio did, Bloglines’ getitems service will mark items as read even though you access it with HTTP GET. This is bad, bad, bad, and will cause nasty surprises. Easy to fix though; just require that they use POST to change the subscription state.

Robert Sayre · He’s a luminary on the Atom Working Group; he hacked and hacked and hacked and implemented an early rev of the Atom Protocol on Mobile Java. It’s not done, but it mostly works, and the JAR is less than 30K. Check out Pat Chanezon’s report, which contains some extra goodies.


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September 28, 2004
· Technology (85 fragments)
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