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Desktop app of the week: Reeder

Reeder icon

I’ve used Google Reader for years. I find it a really useful way of managing the many RSS feeds I subscribe to, but I hate its online interface. This means that I’ve spent years using various desktop applications that work with it. I’ve tried lots of them, but the one that’s currently occupying a space on my dock is Reeder, which I also use on my iPhone.

Reeder has everything I want in an RSS reader. It allows me to manage my Google Reader subscriptions from within the app, which many alternatives don’t. It clearly shows my entire RSS inbox on the left, and the contents of each individual item on the right. The weblink to the full article is a click away, as is the Readability version, which I usually try first. It will allow me to tweet or email articles with a single click, and also has a button to send them straight to Pocket. There are built-in options for loads of other services too.

I think Reeder is brilliant, and I highly recommend it.

This 1,666th post was filed under: Favourite desktop apps, Technology, , , , .

iPad App Review: Flipboard

20110329-111000.jpg Of all the apps I have installed on my iPad, Flipboard is probably the one that has had the greatest impact on my digital life.

Prior to getting my iPad, I used to view my Facebook and Google Reader feeds via Socialite on my MacBook, and Twitter via the Twitter App for Mac of iPhone, depending on where I was.

Flipboard has now taken over from all the above.

It sucks in all of the above feeds, and produces a personalised ‘social magazine’ that just looks great on the iPad. Twitter links are sucked in, so that the linked webpage is transformed into a magazine article, while non-linking Tweets just appear. TwitPics appear as pictures in my magazine. It really is quite incredible, and very fast – probably quicker to refresh than the Twitter app on my iPhone.

But, importantly, it doesn’t just look good – it is brilliantly functional.

20110329-111113.jpgFlipboard allows me to cross post anything anywhere, so I can share that interesting Tweet on Facebook or post that interesting article from Google Reader to Twitter with just a tap. You can also elect to ‘ignore’ people, without having to ‘unfriend’ or ‘unfollow’ them, which comes in handy.

Flipboard is now the primary way I interact with all of the above feeds. It’s brilliant.

Brilliant, but not perfect. I’d like to see threading of conversations on Twitter. I’d like to see whether Facebook statuses had comments without having to tap on them. I’d like Flipboard to see which Twitter and Facebook updates I’ve read and hide them, like it does with Google Reader (unless they have new comments). I’d really like Flipboard to learn what I like, and push those things to the front of the magazine rather than absolutely sticking to the timeline.

But still, Flipboard is great – in fact, I think it’s my favourite iPad app to date. I’m confident it will retain its place in my Dock for some time to come!


This is the fifth and final in a series of posts reviewing iPad Apps. Yesterday’s review was of Who Wants to be a Millionaire HD. If you enjoyed the series, let me know in the comments or on Twitter (@sjhoward), and maybe I’ll do something similar again sometime.

But that’s it for now… Stay tuned for more posts on different topics coming soon(er or later).

This 1,434th post was filed under: iPad App Reviews, Reviews, Technology, , , , , , , .

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