[*]OneReader: all your news streams
The way we consume news online has evolved: we no longer visit home pages of web sites and we browse less for news. Most of our news comes from links exchanged by our contacts on social networks and RSS feeds for more advanced users. The common feature among modern methods of news consumption is the way in which the content is delivered: through streams of information.
But currently, there is no easy way to consume our various streams in a coherent fashion. They all come with a different presentation, they are meant to be accessed by different apps, and news content is mixed with other types of content. We have to jump from app to app, open links just to check if an article may be interesting, get the same content over and over…
Reading the news we want is more time consuming than necessary and we are easily overwhelmed. In addition, we use more and more services to which we want to send that news: share again, read later, store for reference…
We are caught in the middle of input and output streams that we have to handle mostly manually.
There are certainly some news reading applications that help. But some are designed for a relaxed, magazine-like experience. Others are very efficient and fast but are restricted to RSS feeds. Some make choices on our behalf as to which articles we should read. None of these applications cater to the news addicts!
I designed OneReader as the app that sits across all of our news streams, making it easy to consume the news wherever it comes from, and to decide what to do with the articles we receive: read, share, store, skip.
OneReader makes it efficient to browse a large amount of content, and this is achieved both by its features and its design.
It aggregates news from RSS feeds (it synchronizes with the most popular services: Feedly, Feedbin, Feed Wrangler) and from the links shared by our contacts on social networks: Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, App.net.
The content from these various sources is presented in a consistent way; to achieve this the social network timelines are presented as streams of articles, pretty much like an RSS feed. The links are analyzed to show only articles. The original posts become comments to the articles – the news content comes first. When an article is received through several sources, it is presented as unread only once.
The user interface of OneReader makes it easy to breeze through articles. Gestures and large buttons (on the iPad) make it easy to navigate between articles. More gestures allow for jumping from timeline to timeline quickly. The major features (marking as read, sharing…) are always easily accessible, from a menu sliding from the right edge of the screen on iPhone and by buttons on the larger screen of the iPad.
These features make it easy to deal with hundreds of articles. OneReader does not do any filtering or prioritization of the articles. It was designed to make it as easy and fast as possible for its users to make their own decisions as to which articles they want to read. Still, additional features are planned for future versions to help tame huge streams… but that’s another story!
OneReader is published by Information Addicts, the company I created to develop applications for information-hungry people.