Musing about RSS

The new RSS feeds from InfoWorld are looking good. They now provide a much better summary of the article by including the first paragraph of the article. Now, some would argue that the feed should provide the full article text in exchange for any ads, but I think that underestimates the excerpt value. Because they tell me to ignore InfoWorld much more often then they tell me to pay attention. And I’m willing to trade an ad in my feed for that. Hmmm, no ads today - did InfoWorld drop the RSS ad idea while I wasn’t paying attention?

Plus, I think that it’s only a matter of time before someone adds predictive capability to a newsreader to pre-fetch articles that you’re likely to select. Then we could head off on a plane or train with a stack of bits to read. And why not mark an article to fetch once a network connection is available? On the way in, you could mark articles to read on the way back. For all the promise of Always On, the reality is Always drifting between On and Off - RSS newsreaders should reflect that reality.

And why don’t more newsreaders download in the background? I’d much rather continue consuming my feed rather than waiting for an article to load - one of the big pluses of a web-based newsreader like Radio Userland in a tab-cabable browser.