Back in the R.S.S.


tl;dr – Subscribe to my shared feed of blog posts I find interesting here. Expect a mix of comic book news, digital culture and technology. You know, the same stuff as this blog and podcast.

When Google Reader shut down and many people were scrambling to migrate to another system, I didn’t. My reaction was similar to that home organization technique. I squirreled away my subscription list off somewhere, and waited until I missed it. I didn’t, not for a long time.

Eventually I came across a reference via Thomas Gideon that he is using Tiny Tiny RSS. It is a self-hosted version of a Google Reader-like RSS reader system. I was into this as 13 years ago, I used a similar style system when I first got my own hosted box.

The first complication was that I could no longer find my squirreled away subscription list. I decided that wasn’t even a big problem and I took it as an opportunity to start from complete scratch. I subscribed to a couple of things, including Thomas’ public feed from his own instance, and away I went. One thing TTRSS is very good at is feed discovery. If you find a blog post anywhere, like from someone else’s feed, and just put that post’s URL in the subscribe field it will find the right feed. It has never failed for me on any site so far. Standardized headers for that are pretty much ubiquitous now so that job is much easier than it once was.

One of the things I liked best about Google Reader is that you could star and/or share individual posts and I did both. I also subscribed to other people’s shared feeds and discovered posts and blogs to follow that way. It was a nice, virtuous cycle. TTRSS has all of that functionality, and I am publishing articles to my shared feed as well.

Another nice thing about TTRSS is that it has a pretty good Android client for reading on your phone. In fact, I prefer the phone interface to the web although I use them both depending on what I’m sitting at.

I don’t spend nearly the time reading the blogosphere as I once did, but it feels good to get back into this world. RSS and the interconnected blog world it enables is too good an ecosystem to let wither and die. Let’s prove the “RSS is dead” prognosticators wrong by

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Dave Slusher is a blogger, podcaster, computer programmer, author, science fiction fan and father. Member of the Podcast Hall of Fame class of 2022.

13 thoughts on “Back in the R.S.S.”

  1. I do definitely share articles, but it’s been hit or miss for the most part. IIRC, I was thinking about putting a widget on my site sidebar showing recently shared stories, but never got around to that. But I think this is actually better…sharing things I enjoyed with people I like! I agree…I expect I’ll be doing more consistent sharing in the future now.

  2. Thomas, I did the same thing. I created a “Shared Feeds” category for all these. I hope to find more. There is an interesting dynamic in a healthy sharing ecosystem. For example, I don’t subscribe to any tech news sites assuming that anything important I will get from you. Presumably, you will get all the comic book news you need from me. Years ago I unsubscribed from Boing Boing because at the time, I was getting way more Disney and thumb-drives-that-look-like-sushi stories than I wanted. I assumed that the really impactful articles would float around elsewhere and I’d eventually see them. I let the blogosphere be my filter, the way a wetlands is for ground water.

  3. I’m also going to set that up…sounds like a great idea. Your BB comment really reverberates, Dave…I still haven’t unsubscribed, but I’ve done a lot of “Mark Read Older than a Day” on it since setting up tt-rss. I guess I have a sentimental fondness for my memories of Boing Boing 10+ years ago that are holding me back, but it’s just not the same blog today.

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