On July 1st, one of my favorite web services, Google Reader, bit the dust. Our six year relationship came to a screeching halt, and I was left heart broken. I’m not going to repeat why RSS is important to me since I already did that one month ago today, but I will say this: NewsBlur is awesome. At $24 per year it’s not free, but you know what? Things that are of high quality are rarely free.
Why is NewsBlur the bee’s knees? It’s fast. Stupid fast. I don’t want to see the silly animations you think add to the user experience, Feedly. And I don’t want to wait between now and the eventual birth of my first child for my RSS feeds to refresh, AOL Reader. And Digg, I hope you enjoyed your moment in the sun, because no one seems to bother bringing up your name anymore.
But seriously, I’ve never experienced a NewsBlur outage. It’s never mixed up my read/unread statuses. The RSS feeds I subscribe to from foreign publications get translated perfectly thanks to Chrome’s built in translation feature. The Android app is tolerable. It’s not great, but it’s not shit. It does the job, and I hope it gets better.
And best of all, the guy who built NewsBlur is super cool. Every complaint I’ve had, he has responded to using the site’s community forum. I mistakingly took the founder as just another guy trying to score money from some idiot VC on the west coast, but I couldn’t be more wrong.
Let me shed some light on the whole move to the Valley and raise VC. Tried it, doesn't work. Much happier, too. Some things shouldn't raise.
— NewsBlur (@NewsBlur) July 29, 2013
So why am I even writing this article? I know I have a reputation of being extremely negative. People seem to think all I do is complain. And they’re right, I love pointing out faults in everything I see, and I totally admit to not spending enough energy telling people about things I enjoy.
While I’m not going to start being Mr. Glass Half Full, I do want to say this: Give NewsBlur a try.