It’s usually not such a great thing when a website you use daily goes offline. Well, this time it’s perfect. Because, you see, it’s just semantics.
Google Reader, as of today, lets you browse your feeds’ last 200 items when offline. While it’s difficult nowadays to find a place that’s NOT online, sometimes you just can’t help it. Like on the tram. Or on a plane. Or in a prison cell, where, technically, you wouldn’t even be allowed to own a notebook. But for a few cartons of cigarettes, nothing’s a problem there. So I hear.
Well, the whole thing is made possibly by an extensions called Google Gears. And while it’s a fascinating thing, I have no clue what the underlying technology is. But fortunately, the good people at TechCrunch do.
Bloglines, the online feed reader, actually updated their service the same day the new Google Reader was released.
The change is rather minuscule, as it only affects the left pane. They’ve added a bit of AJAX magic, so that when the pane reloads to gather the new items, it’s done quickly and unobtrusively, and not as clumsily as it used to.
With these enhancements, Bloglines is still uncontested as the best online feed reader in existence. I tried going with Google’s reader, as it’s actually a very fine application, but unfortunately it lacks a few little things I’ve just come accustomed to in Bloglines: the display of a website’s fav-icon or the ability to sort and regroup your feeds any which way you want.
Many people have been giving Bloglines bad write-ups lately, mainly because they don’t update their service as often as others. But with the example of Rojo in mind, a service that offered just about anything you could ever need in a feedreader, but still never really got off the ground, Bloglines is doing the wisest thing by scaling and keeping their service stable and easily usable.