Bloglines Rocks


I've switched from using FeedDemon to using Bloglines exclusively. It's a great service that has the advantage of not sucking up local resources, and more importantly, is outside my control in terms of news updates. I'm like a pigeon clicking the refresh button looking for another seed of info if I have control of my own aggregator, so it's much better to let someone do the refreshing for me. Seriously.

Here's the feeds I read using their Share Feeds option. That's very cool. I've added a Favorites menu item that incorporates their blogroll service as well.

Not that Bloglines is perfect. The three pane interface is desperately in need of a redesign. Thank goodness the frames are resizeable so I can get rid of all that wasted space at the top. I'd also like to see a little less JavaScript that doesn't work on FireFox. Most Javascript can be duplicated with roundtrips anyways, I'd just do it that way.

They also need a revenue model. I can't imagine how much bandwidth they must be using with no advertising that I can see. Ready for this idea? Continue to provide a free online version free of ads, but provide a WAP 2.0 (XHTML-MP) mobile version for $30 a year. I'll be the first to sign up. The mobile version has to be good though: filtered content, strip the images (with place holders), page the results so that you don't get more than say 100k of text in one hit, summarize all the longer entries with a "view more" link, and for the link-only blogs, provide a Google-like XHTML-MP proxy which grabs the linked entry and makes sure its presentable for smaller devices.

I think this is a killer business model: the volumes for mobiles is just so high. Did you know that Sprint has sold over 3.5 million games just this year alone? That's just one carrier here in the U.S. where the mobile phone penetration rate hasn't topped 60% yet. The volumes for mobile services is going to be mindboggling and Bloglines is ahead of the pack in terms of providing a great service.

Mobilize it and let the revenues flow.

UPDATE: It looks like bloglines actually *has* a mobile version! Rock! They still need to incorporate the suggestions above, though.


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