NetNewsWire has made browsing fun again!

netnewswire-icon-128.pngIf you’re using two or more Macs that are synchronized with .Mac, and you use Safari to track RSS feeds, this is the tip for you! This thing rocks.

For months, I’ve been limping along with two Macs, Safari RSS, and .Mac, and it was a huge hassle. .Mac is supposed to synchronize the state of your RSS feeds between machines (since OS X 10.4.4, I believe), but it doesn’t. What it does do it corrupt your Syndication database periodically, requiring a Reset Safari to recover.

This is a huge inconvenience, because (until Safari 3.x/OS X 10.4.10) resetting Safari also deleted all saved forms, passwords, and cookies.

My workaround was onerous. I had to do all my browsing on my laptop, and synchronize .Mac manually if and only if all of my RSS feeds had been read. The desktop continued to sync hourly, and it had all RSS support turned off. This worked, but the downsides were I had to do all my browsing in one extended sitting, I had to use the laptop, and any changes I made to my calendars or contacts didn’t propagate to all my computers until I caught up with the RSS feeds.

This made the desktop almost useless to me for browsing. Not to mention, Safari (even 3.x) has been getting painfully slow, especially browsing RSS feeds that have lots of links to trackings sites and social sites, and whatever other cruft people are including in their feeds these days.

NetNewsWire to the rescue

A few weeks ago, the publishers of NetNewsWire made it a free application. It’s fast and easy to use. I don’t have to scroll through every item in a feed, I just look at a list of the titles. If none strike me, bam, they’re done. I’m 5 to 10 times faster getting through my large list of feeds, and I don’t feel I’m missing a thing.

Even better, NetNewsWire’s publishers also run a web site, NewsGator, which is also free. NewsGator gives you two very useful features: The ability to synchronize multiple Macs and PC clients, and the ability to read your feeds on their web site with any web browser, even say… oh, I don’t know… an iPhone? Oh yeah. Blackberry, Windows Mobile, and Java Mobile users also get free clients to use.

So now, I can use any computer I want whenever I want. My .Mac syncing is all automatic and needs no hand-holding, so my computers are all always up-to-date with my calendars and contacts. I can blast through my list of feeds to read in no time, and leave off anywhere I want. I can even pick up where I left off on a different computer.

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Explore posts in the same categories: Mac Tips & Tricks, Macintosh

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