You may have RSS feeds accumulating dust over time, but that unfortunately doesn’t mean the number of unread items will kindly reduce for you. Usually, the feeds (find some interesting ones here) get updated often and increase daily so in order to catch up with the reading, displaying your feeds somewhere more accessible or at least, have them come to you may prove useful.
What’s better than showing you your feeds to read right on your desktop? You could benefit from any built-in gadgets that can show you bits of news to help you catch up with unread pieces.
Be Selective With The Feeds You’re Trying To Keep Up With
In order to reduce the number of items to read, you could also narrow down the topics you’re interested in, edit the RSS feed yourself (unless your favorite blog offers feeds by categories) to remove items that you’re not going to read or care about anyway. If you want to be in total control of what shows up in your feeds, you can also create your own feeds by learning a bit of code.
To save yourself some time, there’s Skeedy, a web-based app that helps you follow your favorite topics, instead of any specific blogs. You could also try your luck with tldr.it, which summarizes long articles or frequently-updated feeds to smaller, more manageable versions.
Making Your Feeds Come To You (Display Them On Desktop)
If you’re more like me and have a few favorite blogs you’re always looking forward to read but don’t have enough time, consider displaying your feeds on your desktop with gadgets for Windows. While Windows Vista’s sidebar gadgets often left the user with more to be desired, Windows 7’s gadgets have a few additional features. You can make the gadgets a bit bigger, and for the feeds gadget, you can even add and edit the feeds (which I don’t think you could do in Vista).
The list of feeds on the feeds gadget by default are, according to Internet Explorer 7 , the feeds you’ve subscribed to and ones that you might be interested in. In order to add your favorite blogs to the RSS reader gadget in Windows 7, you’ll need to first visit the webpage you wish to see on your desktop (for instance, CNN) in Internet Explorer and subscribe to the feed.
You can double-check that you’ve added the site by going to Favorites > Feeds. Now, right-click on the desktop and select Gadgets.
Once the gadgets show up, add the RSS gadget and click on the wrench icon for Options on the side of the gadget.
You should now have the recently added feed in the drop-down list.
You can now select how many entries to display and click OK. If you resize the widget, you’ll probably get a better view of the feeds.
The benefit of having a gadget on Windows 7 is that it won’t be too resource-intensive and you don’t need to download anything extra, just a tiny bit of set up in Internet Explorer.
Using additional, third-party RSS feed viewer gadgets include Feed Viewer, Hermes auto-scrolling reader and RSS Reader Plus can be a great idea because they are usually steps above the simple (built-in) RSS reader. With RSS Reader Plus, for instance, you can customize everything in the feed displayed, including fonts, color and sizes.
It even provides scrolling text, especially useful when you’re trying to get an overhead of everything that’s being expressed. One thing about the RSS Reader Plus is that it’s currently very young so there are typos in the gadget.
If you prefer full-blown programs, you could benefit from using Feedling, which sticks your feeds on top of your wallpaper, perfect for this purpose (see Timmy’s screenshot above). Don’t forget there are many traditional desktop applications, such as the cross-platform Google Reader app.
How do you manage keeping up with the constant stream of updates from your favorite news sources? Share your tips in the comments!
Image credit: pandemia