Thursday, September 29, 2005

Everything Old is New Again: "Rivers of News" come to light in RSS Feeds

I will try to write this one as politely as possible, but I have to chuckle a little bit at a posting that shows how Silicon Valley terminology can make the oldest of concepts sound like they're worth their weight in VC gold. "Standard news readers organize feeds into groups, and then under each feed are items...But there's another kind of reader, an aggregator, that works differently, and I think more efficiently for the human reader. Instead of having to hunt for new stories by clicking on the titles of feeds, you just view the page of new stuff and scroll through it. It's like sitting on the bank of a river, watching the boats go by. If you miss one, no big deal. You can even make the river flow backward by moving the scollbar up."

Geez, I must be Rip van Winkle - I thought that was called a...NEWS TICKER??

Pardon my sarcasm, but it is funny at times how a whole new generation of content producers has come along and sometimes takes such pride in their (re)invention of the wheel. At the end of the day I suppose it's more of an indication of just how early and primitive are the tools being used in today's user-generated media. We'll look back on this era in a few years the way that less-young people such as myself chuckle at the Baudot tickers from the early days of financial data feeds. There is so much yet to come...
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