We’re a Mac household full of readers. All of us are reading something seemingly all the time. If it’s not reading on the iPhone, it’s the iPad. If not the Mac, it’s one of those antique tree-based devices (books, magazines, newspapers).
These days, our tool of choice is the iPad because it’s so personal and lap friendly (there’s a reason Apple uses the term notebook vs. laptop). One other thing we have in common, regardless of the device, is our use of RSS readers.
RSS Readers Are Your Friend
If you use an RSS reader, then you’re ahead of the game and beyond an average Mac user. If you use Safari’s built-in RSS reader to track web sites, there’s a better way.
If you’ve never used an RSS reader, don’t be intimidated. Be thankful someone is pointing you in the way online reading heaven.
The Mac App Store should be your first place to check out RSS. Basically, an RSS reader subscribes to a web site’s RSS feed, which is a headline and summary of recent web pages.
The reader makes it easier to browse through dozens to hundreds of web sites in minutes.
The Mac App Store has readers ranging from free to as much as $10 and plenty in between. Among the Mincey household favorites are Reeder, because it syncs with Google Reader and other Apple devices.
Also popular is the less expensive NewsRack, which also has an iDevice version to keep your sites in sync.
NewsBar is inexpensive and delivers a different layout on the Mac’s Desktop. As with most Mac RSS readers, just drag and drop an RSS URL onto the app and you’re automatically subscribed. Mouse over an RSS feed in the sidebar and get the details from the site.
Caffeinated has a standard design, subscriptions in the left sidebar, headlines in the middle column, and page details in the larger right column.
I counted at least a dozen or two other RSS readers on the Mac App Store. The key to selecting one is to try something other than Safari’s built-in RSS reader. It’s bare bones, and works, but browsing is more time consuming than a standalone reader.
There’s no better way to scan dozens and dozens of sites, headlines, and news and information summaries than an RSS reader.