Distant Constructs

published: 2015-04-06, updated: 2021-01-15

The Glory of Syndication

In the past few years, I noticed that, in marked contrast to my initial Brownian wanderings on the internet, a distinct monotony had engulfed my browsing habits. The first 15-20 minutes would be spent checking blogs, news sites, and comic strips. I found the best way around this was to subscribe to syndicated feeds such as RSS or Atom.

This website has syndication enabled. Point your RSS client to the home page to discover it.

Feeds vs Bookmarks

I had a much better experience using feeds to keep track of sites than bookmarks. Too often, I would bookmark an interesting site and forget about it, missing subsequent updates. With feeds, which alert you on unread updates, I no longer have this issue.

Feed Clients

While browsers such as Firefox offer feed readers and there are feed aggregators on the web, I found that using dedicated feed reader to be the most convenient. I have tried out using both the text based client newsboat (formerly newsbeuter) and the graphical Liferea. I have found both to be excellent and very customizable.

Client-side customization

One big benefit of using a client side application is that the style of the feed can be completely customized to provide a homogeneous appearance to disparate feeds. For example in Liferea, the CSS of syndicated content can be set.