Google Reader dies?

So, the Google people decided to retire the reader application. This is, for me, one of the saddest piece of news of the year. It also make me distrust web applications once again, reminding myself that the Web 2.0 revolution is over, and we should go back to our desktops and laptops.

Google Reader was the first application that I actually used exclusively on the web. Not even GMail; for a long time I had KMail download my mail from gmail. It was the reason why it made sense to have something like that on the web instead of my desktop; The news I followed, it made sense to keep the progress of my reading somewhere, in a single place, on the web.

Google Reader is the one application I recommended to pretty much everyone. It was fast, smart, easy to use. Reader really was the best news aggregator out there. I always kept two tabs open in my browser. The first was the mail, the second was the reader.

Now I’m looking for alternatives. I’m looking for a desktop app that can save my news reading progress on the web. But I want it to be a desktop app: if it’s cross platform, in Windows and Linux, it’s perfect. I heard some good things about Feedly, unfortunately, probably due to the announcement of Google and the suggestion of cnet to use it as a replacement, their server just fell under the extra load. Do you have any other suggestions?

And on why the reader is retired, my guess is that it has to do with the harassment that Google is put through from the news outlets. I wonder how fast will their viewership fall after this move. Let’s wait and see.

Still, sad news. For me, it’s the day web 2.0 died.

13 Replies to “Google Reader dies?”

  1. bolthead

    So … the day somebody stops providing you some free service is the day an entire technology – or just some bloody over hyped annoying buzzword from immemorial times, whatever – dies.
    how ’bout making your own / grabbing some free aggregator, hammer in whatever additional functionality you want and host it wherever/however you please?

  2. Dorin Lazăr

    So the web 2.0 was about freebies, and about availability. Now, Google was always seen as the ‘guy that can pull of the rug under your feet’. Unluckily, this rug was the exact one which I used to praise these guys, and the web technologies in general.
    So pretty much, for me today is the day I’ll stop trusting websites for being forever available. 🙂 And about that personal solution, I’m searching. Maybe I’ll do something on my own. 3D, on three monitors, just to make the hackers in the movies jealous.

  3. Raluca

    NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!! I did not know this one. No, no no no nonononononono. And this comes after testing feedly for a week or so and finding it dissappointing compared to my dear google reader. Ah frack it. Gotta look for replacements now.

    But i must say your reaction is a bit dramatic. How can you expect a web app to be always there available for you? Things change so fast on the web, apps change all the time. Not one is the best, there are always alternative solutions. And also, don’t you ever get tired of using the same ones and look for upgrades, better features, more suited to your needs?

    Your view on this is kind of archaic and weird coming from a programmer.

  4. Dorin Lazăr

    I expect my apps to be my apps; that’s the whole point. Using the web-based ones is bad, and Google Reader should be a cautionary tale. Dramatic? May be so, but it’s somewhat ‘vital’ piece of tech that simply disappears because fuck you, that’s why.
    It won’t be long until I will have to roll my own thing. And that would suck, because I have no time to waste on writing news aggregators.
    Son, I’m disappoint.

  5. Raluca

    The only reply i can give you for your answer is that your expectations are unreasonable. I can see and understand your point, although i do not agree with it.

    I doubt that you will have to roll your own thing anytime soon. There are many alternatives out there. My first google search on this gave me: And i am sure you can find many more suitable. Maybe an open source one which you can twitch and adjust, exactly like you want.

    I’m dissappoint too. But not for the same reasons.

  6. Dorin Lazăr

    ‘tsok. Still, this is sudden. Of course I’m disappointed, frustrated and sad. 🙂
    Because this also means a shift in other areas too. This is just the beginning.

  7. __Vali

    And: “From your 351 subscriptions, over the last 30 days you read 2,688 items, clicked 807 items, starred 5 items, and emailed 0 items.”

    I definitely spend way too much time on GR, I am pretty much addicted to it.
    I still can’t believe is going down, still hoping Google guys will change their mind (even though it never happened before).

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