“Email overload” is so . . . last century. RSS was supposed to help with that, but it seems that RSS has a bit of an overload problem itself. Apparently, the “inundation of information” knows no bounds.
RSS power users have dozens of feeds and (literally) hundreds of posts to read each day. Just look at this Google Reader Blog post (with video) about how Robert Scoble, can go through 600 feeds in a flash. He demonstrates some tips on how to breeze through all of that RSS goodness and focus on the stuff that is important to him.
Others look to technology to vet the deluge of RSS data. One such company is AideRSS. According to their blog (which ironically does did not – at the time of original posting – have a prominent RSS subscribe button), it works this way:
AideRSS is an intelligent assistant, which continuously monitors RSS feeds, finds the good stuff, creates a PostRank™, and delivers it to you. We do the grunt work of collecting information on every post, allowing you to focus on your agenda and stay on top of the news stream.
That is interesting, but what does it mean? This “PostRank™” apparently is a scoring system that ranks articles based on “relevance and reaction” (is this a Digg-like component where users vote and thereby to elevate a story’s relevance?). In any event, a picture says a thousand words:
And moving pictures (with sounds) say even more. Here is the AideRSS screencast page.
Enter BlastFeed. Another company that apparently has the same frustration with RSS (and is doing something about it) is BlastFeed. In addition to essentially filtering RSS feeds, it allows delivery to an RSS reader, email, or IM. In contrast to AideRSS, BlastFeed does not appear to have an automated scoring system. Here, you define the keywords that activate the filter.
According to their about page, “BlastFeed lets you create “channels” of information. A channel describes: (a) what to search for, i.e. a set of keywords defining the topic you are interested in; (b) where to search for, i.e. in which RSS content sources these keywords will be detected; and (c) how to receive results, i.e. by email, on IM, or as a RSS feed.”
Oh, the possibilities for lawyers. I can hear it now: “I want a feed on Antitrust law, but only blog posts that mention Microsoft.” Or, “I like that Wall Street Journal Law Blog, but I don’t have time to read all the non-sense like associate salary news, can you review it and only send me the good stuff?” Etc., etc. etc…
What about KM salaries?
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