Goodbye Google Reader. Hello Bazqux!

Well, yesterday was the first day without Google Reader. I honestly expected to be posting an epic rant here complaining about whatever replacement I ended up with. The announcement was made in March, but I figured it was best to wait until the end and see who had implemented the best option. Plus there was always the possibility that GReader ended up surviving somehow.

Last week, I realized the end was getting very close and I still hadn’t even started exploring any options. I needed to find some place to park my 700+ feeds, hopefully without having to change my reading process too much. Ideally, it would have a minimal interface like GReader, and an API so I could tag articles and pull them out later with an automated script.

My preferred client is Feeddler Pro¬†(just a kick-ass reader for the iPad), so whatever I chose needed to work with that – definitely limiting my options. I tried FeedHQ – didn’t like it. I tried The Old Reader – it functioned very similar to GReader and I definitely considered it, but it seemed a little slow UI/UX-wise. I even tried some options that were not compatible with Feeddler Pro (HiveReader, Feedly, and a self-hosted option: tiny tiny RSS). Nothing really seemed to fit.

Feedler Pro also mentioned supporting Bazqux – what kind of name is that?! I would have NEVER tried it had it not been listed as being supported.

Well, Feeddler certain chose right! Sign up was easy (though I would have preferred not to have to use an OAuth2 service). Imported my feeds, no problem.¬†Started to explore the interface – very, very similar to GReader but it can also track comments – interesting! Not sure if I’m going to do this going forward because I have enough to read/keep up with, but it’s nice to have the option. And it is ungodly fast – much faster than GReader. Same keystrokes too, so nothing new to learn.

It’s missing some features (no way to bulk set the preferred order to Oldest), and it’s got some bugs – I went through manually setting the Oldest first, and ended up with a 1G Chrome session, so it has some JS memory leaks on extended sessions, but I’m sure they’ll get those under control. And it’s got a drop-in replacement API (same URL structure, same functionality) – I’ve already got my ‘starred article‘ script working again.

So farewell Google Reader – you really helped me process a lot of valuable information and I’m grateful, but I’m happy that I haven’t had to change much (anything) with Bazqux so onward and upward!

You can learn more about Bazqux by reading the FAQ.

Slick billiards game built with HTML5 technology

I came across this neat little billiards game:

built with in Rails with JavaScript. In fact, you can fork it on Github here:

Pretty impressive!