The old adage goes, “if you want something done right, you’ve got to do it yourself.” Being the maniacally demanding perfectionist that I am, that is not an unusual sentiment for me. This time, my attention turned to feed readers. For some reason I decided I actually needed to start keeping up with what is happening in the world – or at least what is happening in the world that I might be interested in knowing about. As it happens, that doesn’t mean “news” at all, in the traditional sense; it is more like technology, music, food, random things. Since I have a lot of friends who blog, I decided that I could use them as a filter so that I wouldn’t have to read everything myself. And I picked a few other news sources that I felt would have interesting articles but not totally overwhelm me.
Now, I could have put all of these feeds into one of the zillions of feed readers that exist out there on the web, but I could not find (and I tried a ton) one of them that met my needs. All I wanted was a listing of the articles sorted by date, not by feed. (Recently I read that this style of feed reader is called “river of news” and has been advocated by Dave Winer, a big shot in the scripting/blogging world.) Since I couldn’t find anything I wanted, I decided to see what I could put together myself. So, a little internet research and three days of hacking with Python and CSS later, I wound up with this. It is updated four times a day (any more would be a total waste of processor and bandwidth) and the feeds that I use are hard-coded. There is nothing dynamic about it, but it does the trick very well. I’ve thought of many improvements that I can make, all that would be interesting to build in. But there is another adage that says, “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.”