A Limit to RSS Attention

I’m finding myself having trouble keeping up with all the RSS feeds I have (109). Which isn’t a huge number, but considering some of them are news feeds, del.icio.us popular, and group blogs like Boing Boing, it’s ending up being about 300 entries a day to read. Even at only a minute an entry (and some take much longer to mull over), that’s five hours of reading. Every day.

I don’t know about you, but I don’t have five hours a day to read and process 300 chunks of information. There needs to be a better way to manage and control RSS feeds. As Herb Simon told us back in the 1960s, there’s no lack of information, just the human limitation to process it all.

Here’s some things I’d like to see in an RSS reader:

  • the ability to widely vary the amount that a feed is accessed, anywhere from several times a day to once a month
  • the ability to designate something as a temporary feed with a limited shelf life, so that after a designated period of time, it vanishes from my list of feeds
  • the ability to determine which feeds will display as an “unread” feed in my dock (I wish I had this for email as well)

If anyone knows of a Mac feedreader that can do even some of these things, let me know.

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