You Need Feeds

Do you want to get informed of the latest updates on your favourite site, but don’t want to clog your inbox with newsletter after newsletter?

Ever had a website that you loved, but it didn’t update on any regular schedule? One that you eventually stopped checking, just because you forgot about it?

Are you sick of big websites trying to decide what you should see, despite what you’ve subscribed to? Sick of “the algorithm” shuffling what order you get told of things, if at all?

YOU NEED FEEDS.

via You Need Feeds

Glad somebody has created this site and probably at just the right time – people seem tired of the unpredictable algorithmic social media feed to provide them with fresh content. You need feeds!

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The internet’s problems haven’t changed in 22 years

A 1996 Wall Street Journal article that’s been quietly sitting on the web, waiting for its rediscovery and renewed relevance, has found its moment on Twitter this week. Though it discusses the contemporaneous issues and concerns of its time, if you extract the particular problems it identifies with the internet and apply them to our present day, you’ll find something disturbing: nothing’s changed. The core concerns that troubled us about our participation in online communities and services in 1996 are basically identical in 2018.

via The internet’s problems haven’t changed in 22 years – The Verge

RSS is undead | TechCrunch

I think the solution is a set of improvements. RSS as a protocol needs to be expanded so that it can offer more data around prioritization as well as other signals critical to making the technology more effective at the reader layer. This isn’t just about updating the protocol, but also about updating all of the content management systems that publish an RSS feed to take advantage of those features.

via RSS is undead | TechCrunch

I love and still use RSS. Many people are already using an RSS-like experiences and not even aware of it. People (myself included) use Twitter like an RSS substitute. Apple News – and its inspiration, Flipboard – is effectively RSS at heart. I have a feeling AMP could probably leveraged to function in this way too.

Apple News is probably closest right now in terms of balance of top publishers, the ability to follow #topics, and add web feeds ad-hoc from websites too.

I think whatever new future approach, it will face the same issues of  balancing over whelming people with the feed, filtering that feed, and the need to monetise.

It’s Time for an RSS Revival

No matter what your current disposition, though, in this age of algorithmic overreach there’s something deeply satisfying about finding stories beyond what your loudest Twitter follows shared, or that Facebook’s News Feed optimized into your life. And lots of tools that can get you there.

via RSS Readers Are Due for a Comeback: Feedly, The Old Reader, Inoreader | WIRED

I get a sense that people are tired of having an algorithm dictate what you see. RSS is a good way to see everything. It comes at the price of managing your own curation and consumption.

AMP letter

We are a community of individuals who have a significant interest in the development and health of the World Wide Web (“the Web”), and we are deeply concerned about Accelerated Mobile Pages (“AMP”), a Google project that purportedly seeks to improve the user experience of the Web.

In fact, AMP keeps users within Google’s domain and diverts traffic away from other websites for the benefit of Google. At a scale of billions of users, this has the effect of further reinforcing Google’s dominance of the Web.

Read the full letter at ampletter.org (via Hacker News)

Net neutrality is dead. It’s time to fear Mickey Mouse – The Verge

It’s a red letter day for the media industry. Disney just took control of 21st Century Fox’s media empire, and the Federal Communications Commission voted to repeal net neutrality regulations that prevent internet providers from discriminatory behavior. These two industry-shaking events will set media companies on a dramatic collision course with ISPs. It is the conflict that threatens the internet.

THE DEATH OF NET NEUTRALITY WILL NOT LOOK LIKE AN APOCALYPSE
This week you might have seen lots of talk about fast and slow lanes, blocked websites, and the end of the internet. But the death of net neutrality is not going to look like a sudden apocalypse. It’s going to look more like things we’ve already seen: data caps, “free” data for apps, and service bundling…

via Net neutrality is dead. It’s time to fear Mickey Mouse – The Verge

Amazon Vs. Google

Amazon has just responded to Google’s decision to remove YouTube from all Fire TV products and the Echo Show. “Google is setting a disappointing precedent by selectively blocking customer access to an open website,” a spokesperson told The Verge by email. “We hope to resolve this with Google as soon as possible.” YouTube is being pulled from the Show effective immediately, and Fire TV owners will lose out on the popular, essential video streaming app on January 1st.

Google says it’s taking this extreme step because of Amazon’s recent delisting of new Nest products (like Nest Secure and the E Thermostat) and the company’s long-running refusal to sell Chromecast or support Google Cast in any capacity.

But regardless of the public stance each company takes over the next few days, it’s their mutual customers who are unfairly getting jerked around. YouTube is a cornerstone of any living room streaming device, and for Google to suddenly decide to strip it from millions of existing Fire TV owners — assuming no agreement is reached by January 1st — is shameful. YouTube is video on the internet. Period. It’s also home to beloved creators, and Google’s decision will soon rob them of viewers.

Putting aside who started it. Its odd that I feel Amazon should be able to decide to stock or not stock products, even if in this case, its to push their own products with no competition.

Conversely I feel like Google/YouTube shouldn’t be able to decide that of a website. Its displaying the web, YouTube is online to devices that can connect to web. Withdrawing the FireTV app, OK, fine. Shutting off a specific device which is now just displaying the YouTube site in a browser webview is just moving the goalposts.

It’s a foretelling scenario of the breakdown of net neutrality. These nonsensical battles will play out with people in the middle, over money.

via Google and Amazon are punishing their own customers in a bitter feud – The Verge

Web development explained to a time traveler from ten years ago

I’m glad that you’re still interested in computers! Today we have many more of them than we did 10 years ago, and that comes with new challenges. We wear computers on our wrists and faces, keep them in our pockets, and have them in our fridges and kettles. The cars are driving themselves pretty well, and we’ve taught programs to be better than humans at pretty much every game out there — except maybe drinking.

Crazy what can happen in 10 years.

via Web development explained to a time traveler from ten years ago