This morning, I discovered something rather unpleasant: Google is “retiring” Google Reader. Is anyone else weeping into her keyboard, sobbing, “WHY?!?”
According to Google, “We know Reader has a devoted following who will be very sad to see it go. We’re sad too. There are two simple reasons for this: usage of Google Reader has declined, and as a company we’re pouring all of our energy into fewer products. We think that kind of focus will make for a better user experience.”
See, this is why technology drives me batshit crazy. I’m not a tech geek; my attitude is that if it ain’t broke, why fix it? “A better user experience”? You know what would make a better user experience? Leaving my technology alone! Does Google Reader really require that much maintenance on Google’s end of things? (I’d love to know the answer to that question, in all seriousness. If you have thoughts on the subject, please share them in the comments!)
That being said, to be honest, I have an ambivalent relationship with Google Reader. I subscribe to a handful of blogs through Reader, but the accumulation of unread posts makes me feel guilty and overwhelmed. So to combat this feeling, I failed to add a lot of my most-loved blog reads to Reader. That way, I am only confronted with new posts from a particular blog when I decide to visit that blog. On the other hand, one of the best things about Reader is its ability to preserve old blogs that have gone offline, like my favorite wine blog and a favorite style blog (anyone remember Between Laundry Days?). When a blog goes into hiding, it’s sad for those of us who read and loved it, and Google Reader provides an archive that makes the transition less painful.
How are you guys handling the news about Google Reader? Have you picked a new RSS feed aggregator? In other words, what’s the next Google Reader that all the cool kids are using?