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Too many RSS feeds? Put ’em on probation

rethink(ip) - Controlling RSS Overload...Animal House Style

Good idea for managing the RSS feeds you think you might be able to live without:

Most aggregators allow you to create "groups" for your blogs. I have groups for "blawgs," "bored," "technology," etc. (see a picture below). The most important group of all is called "Probation." Into the Probation group goes every new blog I add to my aggregator. EVERY one. Consider it a quarantine tank for your RSS aquarium. Once a month, go through your Probation group and cull the herd, promoting some to the big leagues, while giving others the boot.

At a more byzantine stage, I did something kind of similar to this--but in less-effective reverse.

I actually had a folder called "Sequester" where I'd throw any feed that was starting to get on my nerves (too many [kitty photos | jokey memes | posts about the salvation promised by Longhorn/Vista]). In NetNewsWire (and probably others) you can set a custom refresh time for a feed or its parent folder (cf.) to, in this instance, ensure you get a nice break from the bothersome content.

So, for example, you could say to check your "Sequester" folder just every 72 hours. When the updates pop up, you can decide whether your ardor has truly cooled enough to unsubscribe (at which point, if you're like me, you move the feed to "Deleted" with "Don't Refresh this Feed" selected).

Managing the glut of easy-to-subscribe RSS feeds is an issue I hear people asking about all the time. Do you have a good trick for culling your XML herd?

[thanks, Ian]

David's picture

I just limit myself to...

I just limit myself to 20 Feeds.

If I subscribe to a new one I have to bump one off the list... for ever... makes sure that the new one is a goodie!

If I can not limit myself to 20 feeds then I figure I should just give up trying to control myself... I obviously don't want to be productive.

I also try to turn my reader on only when I'm in the mood for surfing... ie after my work is done... never during the day.

Of course I fail miserably... but it is a conscious action to turn it on... I'd be giving up all hope if I kept it on 24/7...




An Oblique Strategy:
Honor thy error as a hidden intention


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