I’ve been taking a look at a service called FeedsAPI recently, after one of the team got in touch with me. It focuses on pulling through full text of articles, blog posts and news items in RSS feeds instead of just the stub of article text you often see in your feed reader. This is something I’ve used Pocket for in the past. You can also set up feeds for static web pages, so that you’re alerted when content has been updated on the web page, which is similar to Web2RSS.
Once you’ve subscribed to an RSS feed you can either get any newly published items sent to you as an email alert or you can add the feed generated in FeedsAPI to your feed reader. Obviously the benefit of having full text articles being pulled through and sent to you is in the time you save in not having to click through to another web page from your feed reader and also that it makes the articles easier to read without being distracted by content elsewhere on the original page eg. adverts; links to other irrelevant articles; etc. When you subscribe you can also decide if any links in the text remain as they are, are removed, or appear as footnotes to the item (I like the footnotes option).
On top of this it has some handy subscription features – you can add other users to subscribe to your feeds and add further feeds, and you can decide who gets to see what on a feed by feed basis. So, for example if I was a librarian responsible for maintaining current awareness in an organisation and I was pulling in feeds with a range of topics, I could share certain feeds with some subscribers based on their interests. So, from the single dashboard you could control all the subscriptions you need and ensure they are shared with the right people. I’d probably need a ‘Professional’ account for this. There is a charge for the service, but you can try it for free for 14 days. For the Professional account you also get access to the API, meaning that if you want to manipulate the data generated from your RSS in FeedsAPI you can.
I can see how this could be useful for people or organisations who would tick all/some of these boxes:
- Would prefer to get their RSS articles as full text, rather than having to click out to the full article
- Would prefer to read their article in as clean a style as possible ie without ads etc
- Want to manage their RSS feeds and page alerts in a single place
- Want to either get the feed as email or read in their RSS reader
- Want to be able to manage subscriptions in a single place for an organisation
As I say, you can get a 14 day free trial, if you like the sound of FeedsAPI and want to find out more. It’s worth taking a look at.
(Originally posted on Discover Organize Share 27/07/2014)