Email is still King

In 2012 I wrote this post, describing my rss2email setup. Since then, I’ve moved on to a host of other rss readers. Notable ones among them are:
  • Newsblur
  • Digg Reader
  • Feedly
Having tried so many of them, I had a clear idea of what was most important for my needs. Newsblur was feature rich, but moving from one post to the next took just that little bit longer than I liked. Digg Reader was lightning fast in that aspect, and is what I’d recommend if someone wants a simple, fast, hosted solution.

But along the way I also ended up owning a couple of non-android phones. The sparse collection in Microsoft’s app store made me realize how important it was not to depend on apps that were tied to a single product.

So I’ve now come full circle, back to rss2email. Fastmail is my email host of choice. I still have more than 70 feeds, some of which are pretty high traffic. So I’ve setup three folders: ‘alerts’, ‘hightraffic’ and ‘toread’.

Once I had some rules set up to redirect most mails to ‘alerts’, and the noisy ones to ‘hightraffic’, my workflow was ready:

During my daily commute, I use the incredible K-9 Mail app on my android phone to skim through the feeds. Any feed that deserves a deeper look gets moved to the ‘toread’ folder. The hightraffic ones are read only when I have time to spare. When I have access to my laptop or desktop, I use the fastmail web interface, which supports vim-like keybindings for quick navigation.

I’ve also moved my self-hosted wordpress blog (again!) back to blogger, which has an option to send a post by email. So I’m typing this as en email that will be sent to blogger shortly.

To recap, I have a solution that is fast, self-hosted, and flexible enough to allow convenient workflows tuned to my free time and connectivity.

However hard a service tries to ‘kill’ email, it’s a testament to how conveniently flexible it is in allowing setups like this.

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