Moving from RSS Bandit to GreatNews
December 26th, 2005
I’ve been a great fan of RSS Bandit during the last year, but a few issues made me look for a replacement. While RSS Bandit remains a fantastic reader (synchronization is the best one out there) and one I’ll be watching closely for further releases, here are the things that I couldn’t live with:
- Performance got really, really bad. I’m subscribed to ~200 feeds, and even though I regularly purge items on high volume feeds, RSS Bandit is now taking forever to startup (load the feeds).
- Feeds get mixed up. Basically, items appear all over the place. This happens intermitently but is still very annoying when it does.
- The built in browser is extremelly slow and I got tired of having to open each web page in Opera.
- The built in browser does not support full screen view.
- New releases are not made as often as needed to keep the userbase satisfied (bug fixes, new features)
So, I had a thorough look at other RSS readers and after trying the latest versions of many of them, I settled with GreatNews. After a couple of weeks of using it in parallel with RSS Bandit, I’ve been using it exclusively for the past month. Here are the key differentiators about GreatNews:
- Really, really fast. It is backed up by a sqlite database and doesn’t use .Net
- It’s developer is putting a lot of effort into the usability of the application. Reading feeds with just clicking the Space key is a pleasure (and minimizes risks of RSI). Keyboard navigation is well thought out and works well.
- Although the built in browser is based on IE, it is fast. It also has full screen browsing.
- Out of the box support for del.icio.us and Furl. Adding other social services (such as Spurl) is a 5 second process.
- Development is very active and forum support is first class. New features are being added on a weekly basis.
- Runs on a USB drive, making synchronization a no-brainer (it does synchronize with Bloglines, but this is quite slow).
- Supports labeling. You define your own labels (RSS Bandit only supports predefined labels).
The things I miss:
- Cross channel search