From Bloglines to NewsGator and back again

When did Bloglines get so good? A few months ago I switched from [Bloglines](http://www.bloglines.com) to [Newsgator](http://www.newsgator.com) because Bloglines was unbearably slow in fetching large, popular feeds. Newsgator is okay, but there are few things about the Newsgator UI that frustrate me:

* The only way to mark a feed read is to click the “Mark all read” link at the top or bottom of the feed. No option to automatically mark as read when you click out of the feed.
* Adding a feed is a multi-step hassle. You can use a bookmarklet to add a site’s feed, but then to get it into a folder is 4 more clicks around the interface. Awkward. Annoying.
* Links reuse the same window. You have to remember to right-click “open in a new window/tab” or command-click (on the Mac) to keep your navigating window available while you explore a link. If you forget, you have to come back to Newsgator and the link you read is still “unread” until you click the “mark as read” link. Awkward. Annoying. This may not be a terrible way to read and navigate, but I prefer something different.

The developers of Newsgator appear to be responsive and time will tell where things will land. They seem to be putting most of their energy into their Outlook application (which I tried and didn’t like) and their article rating system which I found a bit useless. Both Bloglines and Newsgator are striving to become syndication “platforms” allowing aggregator developers to hook in so their stand-alone software can sync to their servers. Plus, their platforms allow for public feeds aka blogrolls and clippings which are so popular with the kiddies these days. Bloglines has their [“Bloglines Web Services”](http://bloglines.com/about/pr_09282004) while Newsgator is doing [something similar.](http://newsgator.com/news/archive.aspx?post=47) A few months later, after spending time bouncing back between both, it appears that Bloglines is the one building the most momentum. There’s a PDA version…when did that happen? It works very nicely. Despite the fact that I can’t stand the color and font choices on Bloglines and I wish I could figure out how to change them, it’s an overall better reading experience. It will be nice when FeedDemon and NetNewsWire syncing works. FeedDemon does work now with Bloglines, but it downloads all feeds and I would rather it sync so unread items in FeedDemon remain unread at bloglines.com.

Now that Bloglines is faster and more reliable than it was before which was my chief complaint, I can’t see a good reason to switch back to Newsgator anytime soon.

New domains

I registered this domain, momathome.com back in 1998. Actually, I wasn’t the one who originally registered it. I didn’t know about these things back then. I helped Andrew Starr of [Newsreaders.com](http://newsreaders.com/) fame with some light graphics work, and in exchange he had the foresight to register the domain name for me. It sat for a while, until my email address with home.com was going away and was going to change to optonline.net (Optimum Online). This would have been my 3rd email address change in 4 years. I dreaded sending out those “my email address has changed, please make a note of it” emails again, so I asked Andrew to set up an email address for me on the momathome.com domain that he was holding. That was the last time I had to send out those “I changed my email address” notices, even though the host of momathome.com has changed more times than I can count since then.

As happy as I am that I own a great domain like momathome.com, I regret that I didn’t get momathome.net or momathome.org when I had the chance. Momathome.net even changed owners, and I missed the opportunity to grab it. The previous owners also had a Herbalife franchise and advertised those annoying “Work at Home” ads on the subways. Folks came to my website and then sent me angry emails wondering why I didn’t have information on the site related to the ad. You would think that one of the requirements of getting a great “work at home” job would be the ability to accurately jot down a website off an ad?

Now that I’m with a [host](http://www.dreamhost.com/rewards.cgi?momathome) that gives me more flexibility on domains,* I did some shopping. [GoDaddy](http://www.godaddy.com) has some registration sales right now, so I snapped up momathomedesign.com, momathomedesign.net, momathomedesign.org, judisohn.com and judisohn.net. For the moment, those domains are all simply pointing here but I may do something more interesting with them in the future.

\* At my old host, in order to redirect multiple domains to the same site I had to write to support and request it. Only a few domains were allowed, after that they charged. At Dreamhost, I can have unlimited domains redirecting to the same site.