Geekspin Blog

Archive for the ‘RSS’ Category

There certainly seems to be a lot of excitement around the “Dave Winer River of news”, what he is done is actually pretty interesting, sure this is just a rehash of an RSS feed but it IS a very easy to use way of reading news, its lightweight and quick loading.

The most common anti-arguments are: (followed by my short followups)

1) Its been done before? Sure, but Dave has a way to strip things down to the bare minimum and its a case of simplicity through minimalism. River puts newest categories first which is surprisingly not a common feature and well its Dave Winer and he’s buzz worthy and gives things weird names, so there!

2) Why not just use RSS? Its a pain to research and install the software for your mobile.

3) Why not just read news on your PC? Well from a South African perspective, most people don’t have on not too mention don’t have Internet access, but a phone with a Wap-type browser and a 3G/GPRS connection is commonplace and convenient for most and the sub 80 Kb pages means 12 plus headlines at R2.00 a MB

Some other interesting things coming out of the river is the legality of republishing another’s feed is illegal or not? The argument is that if you provide full public feeds that it shouldn’t be a problem. Others argue that you are removing valuable advertising revenue for those sites.


UPDATE: In case you dont understand what a River of News is, its basically a simple technique to display a conventional RSS feed in a cellphone friendly, zero setup format. Example:

FAUX PAS: Hmm I just realised that the older generation wap browsers wont be able to deal with pages exceeding +- 30 KB, but those with Blackberry’s, 6 and N series Nokias and other higher level phones won’t have a problem. What is the solution? Maybe some paging?