Retaining My Attention MetaData: Part 1

I’ve stopped using Bloglines. It’s a RSS feed aggregator in a web browser. It’s “free” (as in money) and it works wonderfully. I really enjoyed using it. (Though the number of feeds I was trying to read got a bit unwieldy.)

What I’ve done instead is install my own web based RSS feed aggregator called Gregarius. It’s created in php and uses MySQL for the database. All this software is “free” as in money AND free as in freedom. Freedom from corporations watching what I watch aka my Attention metadata.

Fortunately I’m capable of installing a PHP application and MySQL database. I’d guess that a majority of web users don’t want to or have the time to do this. That’s why they take the easy most cost effective choice of signing up for “free” (as in money) web service. (or run it on their desktop)

Why did I do this? Because I am taking back the valuable metadata I create by looking and not looking at RSS feeds on the web. All this time we spend surfing adds up to lots of information that you can learn from. This knowledge can then be applied to a myriad of decisions. Those decisions can make things happen like making money and a whole bunch of other things. I believe this is the core business plan of most web services companies. (Tell me if I’m wrong Bloglines.)

The bottom line is free web apps aren’t enough compensation for my valuable Attention. I’m not special; your Attention is just as valuable. We should all value it much higher. We should renegotiate our agreement with free (as in money) web based services.

This is only the beginning of my personal web interaction transformation. Stay tuned for more change.

4 thoughts on “Retaining My Attention MetaData: Part 1”

  1. Found this post in my bloglines this morning: great post, Brian, let me know how the transition goes. Bloglines sets a high standard, but I love that fuzzy feeling I get when I smash proprietary software against the wall. Viva software Libre!

  2. interesting. i just saw a referrer in my logs from gregarious. i was quite interested in what the hell it was and now you’ve helped me along my way. sounds cool. gonna take a closer looksy at this later on tonight at home where i can tinker.

  3. Have been useing Gregarius from some time now haven’t come across a beter feed reader its best if u have it running on a webserver especially the nightlies . . .

  4. Just got around to installing it as I am now looking for a agregator for a client. Not sure if this is exactly the right solution for them yet, but I am *completely* impressed with the quality of this project. Gregarius is far superior to bloglines. I recommend it to anyone with their own Apache server. And you get the fuzzy FOSS feeling.

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