Last year sometime, I began getting into RSS and Atom feeds, even as they become deprecated. Feeds offer a way to read a website’s content without being bombarded with ads, notification requests, interstitials, alerts, and other miscellaneous annoyances. It is possible to put ads into RSS feeds, but they’re far more tolerable because they’re not so “in your face”.
In Firefox, I use Feed Preview which is great. It’s very simple without a lot of bells and whistles, but it does what it’s supposed to do. In Vivaldi, I use Slick RSS. It’s pretty good. Vivaldi uses extensions from the Chrome Store, and I didn’t find a Chrome version of Feed Preview. Slick RSS can read feeds on its own and doesn’t need to be connected with a third-party service, which is an annoying requirement of many other feed readers. On my laptop and desktop at home, I use RSS Guard. I tired a few other RSS readers for Linux, but kept having problems. Since it looks like the developer of RSS Guard wants to abandon the project, I’ll probably have to look for another feed reader for Linux at some point, but until then, I’m pretty happy.
Over the past week I’ve been working on the other side of feeds – creating them. More to the point, I’ve been looking at the specs for Atom and RSS, and writing code for Amore to have feeds for the main page and for each user. The feeds are sort of a precursor for WebSub, which is sort of a precursor for federation (if I understand it correctly).
The differences between RSS and Atom are minimal. Both are good, but neither is perfect. RSS was developed first, but sort of stagnated. Atom was developed to overcome some of the perceived flaws of RSS, but then RSS came out with a new version: RSS 2.0. However, to put it all in perspective, the specifications for RSS 2.0.11, the most recent version, were published in 2002. That’s ancient by internet standards. Neither of them likes internationalized domain names because they think non-Latin characters are an aberration or something. They could both do with an update.
Now that Amore has Atom and RSS feeds the next step is to allow comments on posts, then possibly doing feeds for individual posts. We’ll see.