Wednesday, March 12, 2008

A ranked feed for the Rails community

I've been working on a solution for two problems in my daily feed reading. First, there are just too many quality things to read. I need them organized by topic and ranked inside each topic . Second, Google Reader doesn't give me visibility to the comments in each blog without clicking through to the posting. What I want is one place where all my feeds, say on RubyonRails, are ranked, visible, and include all the comments. Ideally I can comment on the postings without exiting the feed reader interface. I've hacked together a partial solution you can try out at

http://friendfeed.com/rails

This is a few dozen Ruby on Rails related feeds from my Google Reader collection fed into aideRSS. AideRSS ranks based on the number of delicious saves, Google Reader Shares, diggs, and comments for each post. Next that AideRSS output is piped into Friendfeed which provides one place where people can comment in a way that all comments are visible in one spot. The friendfeed feed can then be pulled into G.R., or just used as -is.

There are a number of problems with this hack. You'll still want to use your favorite feed reader. In the feed reader you're not able to contribute to the comments without exiting the reader, nor can you actually read the posting without clicking through to it. However if commenters use Friendfeed, Google Reader will embed comments in the feed. Today of course most of the comments will still be on each blog rather than centralized on this feed. I've seen some feed readers that pull in comments, and then there's Cocomment, but these various pieces need to work together.

If only Blogger/Wordpress/Typepad, Google Reader, AideRSS and Friendfeed would get busy and have a bastard child I'd have a solution.

I'm interested in feedback on this - does anyone else have this problem? What would be your ideal solution?

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