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Ask HN: Please review our RSS feed filtering app
3 points by toddcw on April 8, 2009 | hide | past | favorite | 3 comments
Here's the home page: http://www.ectofeed.com/. We're currently in an invitation-only beta, but our video tour should give you a pretty good picture of what it's all about: http://www.ectofeed.com/tour.

The basic idea is that we allow feeds to be filtered according to your interests. Based on our testing up to this point, the app can save considerable time (and annoyance) in allowing you to filter out items you wouldn't even want to glance at. For a bit more on the philosophy and justification behind it all, check here: http://www.ectofeed.com/about.

It's not very apparent from the video, but any filtered feed (at the folder or feed level), can itself be accessed as an RSS feed. As such, you wouldn't be tied to our reader--you could use Google Reader, Bloglines, or whatever else you'd like.

Our intent is to eventually commercialize the service, so we'd also be interested to know if, assuming it worked for you, you'd be willing to pay a small monthly fee for the service. We might also look at an ad-supported model, so feedback on that idea would also be helpful.

Thanks much,


I think you're going to get much better feedback if you let people actually use your service. How much trouble could it be to make a bunch of HN invitation codes? You're essentially asking us to critique your front page and screencast.

That said, from the screencast itself, this seems like a tremendous amount of work for not a lot of benefit--especially if I have to (and that's what it seems like) go back into your reader to change these scores and then return to GReader. Why shouldn't I just hit "j" in GReader when I come up to something I don't like as opposed to doing all your work?

Also, the screencast itself: (this is basically just pedantry) you should normalize the vocals. The levels jump around. And while I'm glad you took the time to run it through what sounds like a noise-reduction filter, it would sound much better if you were talking louder and clearer when you recorded it.

Thanks for the feedback. We anticipated that one of the initial critiques would be that it requires some work up front, which is true. It's really not much of a bubble to get over, though; after that you'll likely just add filters once in a while. The idea is that, in the long run, it will save you time. If you don't mind sifting through all of the cruft, though, a standard feed reader would obviously fit the bill.

If you'd like to try it out, simply drop your email address in here: http://www.ectofeed.com/signup. Rather than generate invitation codes at the outset, we'll simply generate them as needed.

Honestly, it feels a little boring to me. I mean, ok, it's nice to be able to custom rank feed items, but it sounds like a lot of work to do beforehand.

Especially as the most interesting items are most often the ones that I did not anticipate.

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