RIP Google Reader

Yesterday, we all heard the unexpected news that Google Reader would be shutting down on July 1 of this year. While this probably should not have been too much of a surprise given how little attention it was receiving, it was still a huge shock to me nonetheless. I’ve used Google Reader nearly every day for the last four years and at this point have read over 245,000 articles on there. But all is not lost. I was able to do the Google Takeout to retrieve my subscriptions (around 60 or so, so not too big) and I’ve been looking for other options. While I mentioned Feedly negatively a while back, it seems like they have made some major updates to their service and are looking to replace the Reader backend with their own that supports the same API, so I have imported and synced up my account with them for now. Further, apps like Press for Android (which is my main RSS reader right now) are also looking into options to keep their app going, so that will be interesting.

In the meantime, I’ve been wanting to move towards a more reliable solution that does not depend on third parties and so one option that is working remarkably well so far is Tiny Tiny RSS. This is a self-hosted solution that I’ve currently deployed on my EC2 instance. There’s also an associated Android application which is reasonably good and so I’m using that as well. While this does increase disk and net I/O, I think it might still worth it. I’m still working through the kinks of doing it all so we’ll see if this things work!

Update: After installing TT-RSS and using it for a few days, I think I really like it! The developer is very active (especially with all the new users coming in). I’m reasonably happy with how it looks on the web interface as well as the Android app, although I’m thinking of doing a few more pull requests with minor changes/fixes. I just hope that it will eventually support the Reader API and in doing so, be able to connect to any RSS frontend. I cautiously hopeful that this is the direction that RSS reading will go in the future (multiple frontends, multiple backends, talking over a unified API). That would be quite swell.