Dealing with RSS overload

Sunday, 19 Sep 2004

I am quite happy with my current recipe for dealing with RSS overload:

Unsubscribe from as many high volume feeds as you can stand to. If any remain, hit “mark all as read” and don’t even try to catch up. I have about 60 feeds in my aggregator, but they’re almost exclusively slow-moving weblogs and low-volume article-oriented sites, so I’m never more than two or three dozen items behind. Following just three high-volume neewsfeeds was 10× as stressful as following 60 low-volume weblogs is.

And the great thing is all these people in my blogroll work for me as filters – I still don’t miss the really cool stuff worth noticing, because it will pop up on someone’s weblog anyway! I just don’t waste so much time with all the chaff anymore. I see a greater diversity of cool stuff, and it’s usually delivered with an opinion piece or pithy remark. That makes it much more interesting than constantly absorbing a tidal wave of raw information. Occasionally I peek into some of those high-volume sites and randomly pick things that pique my interest to see if I can contribute some preprocessing back to the pool.