I’m a bit slow. I’m just now getting into the whole RSS reader thing. I’ve had my photoblog running for about 8 months which has a RSS feed and we’ve been doing the MIS Guys site for a couple of months and haven’t really even kept an eye on the RSS side of things. I’ve tried a couple of readers in the past but just couldn’t get into them. I sat down and decided to find a good one and here are the results.
I tried some that are embedded in Firefox, a couple that are embedded in Outlook and the rest as stand alone versions. So far my favorite is JetBrains Omea Reader. It is really sharp looking and it’s free! It has a cool newspaper view that I have turned on so that the posts for the RSS feed look more like a webpage instead of a bunch of seperate posts. This reader also handled enclosures well. Enclosures are kind of like attachments to RSS posts. For instance This Week In Tech is an excellent tech podcast and their RSS contains the enclosure for the MP3 of the poscast. Omea Reader made it really easy to find and download the MP3 for their recent posts.
I also tried NewsMonster. It is embedded into Firefox or IE. It looked good from their website and the screenshots. However, it crashed my Firefox and I had to delete my profile and set it all back up. In all fairness, it might have been my Firefox or my computer. But, I didn’t feel like spending time trying it again so I went on to a different one.
FeedDemon was the next reader I tried. I liked it but the Omea Reader is just as good and free. Ever the cheap person I am, free wins the day.
FeedReader came in second because like the Omea Reader it is also free. FeedReader worked well and looks sharp and I am still running it along side the Omea Reader to see if there is anything about it I like more. One thing about it was there was nothing that clearly let me know there was an enclosure on posts. If you double click on a post it would prompt you to save the enclosure but until you did so you didn’t know one was there.
I didn’t try it but Pluck looks good as well, but it’s a in-browser addin for Firefox and or IE.
NewsGator works well but it is basically a web service and I want to be able to use an RSS reader on a portable machine that might not be connected to a network. This is actually good if all you want to do is read the RSS feeds on computers that are always connected to the web. The other benefit of this is that you don’t have to setup all of the RSS feeds on other computers you want to use because your preferences are stored on their servers. So, mobility beats out and JetBrains Omea Reader is my choice for now.
There are many other readers out there and I didn’t spend a huge amount of time looking into them all. Let me know if you have other suggestions as I’d like to try some more readers.