That’s right—I have 11,072 unread items on my feed reader. All of it pretty much equates to me being way behind on my subscriptions. I am either subscribed to too many feeds, engaged in too many other things to bother, uninterested in the feeds which I am subscribed to, or a combination of all three. It would appear that it is time to fix this problem right now.
Obviously, I am subscribed to way too many feeds, but I have to be keep on top of things. How can we solve this problem? First, I could use a feed filtering service like AideRSS, illumio, or FilterMyRSS. Next, I could use the abilities within many feed reading applications to discover content that has only the content I want within the feed (alternatively, I could exclude this content as well)—NetNewsWire and FeedDemon offers functionality like this. Finally, I use services like TechMeMe, Reddit, and Digg to get only the best news out there.
Another issue that I have is the time that is required to read so many stories in a single day. Even if I was only subscribed to 50 feeds, and those sites posted an average of three items per day, if it took around around 20 seconds to evaluate the content of each story, it would require at least 45 minutes to read those feeds. Assuming you actually had a few stories that you wanted to read, now you should see how it all adds up to a very time consuming process. The only way I can rectify this problem is to reduce the feeds and set up a tight schedule. It is not easy.
Finally, there are just too many feeds that have either not produced valuable content or are not of use to me anymore. This is probably the leading issue that prevents me from being able to read all my feeds. I could simply segregate them in their own portions of my feed reader so that I can easily skip them if need be, but I could also simply remove them. Perhaps it would be an even better idea to setup an account on Pageflakes or Netvibes—set it as my homepage to get news to me fast that might not be as work related, and then I can dedicate time to get fully fed from my feed reader.
It really is information overload to the max. I have some work to do to get on top of this issue, but I am open to any suggestions. How do you keep on top of things without being overloaded with information? If someone can solve that question, create an application that can handle it, and, finally, monetize it, that person has it made!
[Video Source: Chris Pirillo]