Rebuilding my Eco-System

Newsblur Care Package
Newsblur Care Package (Photo credit: Zack Fernandes)

The last few days, I’ve been reading and collecting a lot of information.  Once upon a time, as I mentioned a while back, I had a system that allowed me to very easily share items I’d collected to a web site.  I used Reader plus Delicious and then Javascript to embed.  Delicious had a tool for that, but that went away when Yahoo sold it.  Ever since, I’ve been trying to replace my system with something new. So far, I haven’t found the perfect thing.  I’ve signed up for Newsblur. So far I like it, and there are lots of sharing options. I think I’m going back to Diigo, which allows me to post items on my blog automatically.

However, I have a slight problem, which I think can be fixed with iftt.  For the newsblur iPad app, where I read a lot of my feeds (I like the size and convenience), Diigo isn’t available.    But I think I can go to an intermediary and then post to Diigo, which will then post to the blog.

Here’s the thing.  I like reading things on my iPad.  It is really built to be a very nice consumption machine.  But taking those things that I consume and remixing them is really hard on the iPad.  There’s no having multiple tabs option.  Most of the stuff that’s built in for sharing isn’t for sharing to a blog and then adding commentary.  Heck, it’s even hard to post to Google plus where you have more than 140 characters.  I guess Facebook does too, but *shiver*.  Maybe the iPad needs to get better at this, but I think the rise of the iPad explains, in part the decline in blogging and creating.  I blame Facebook and Twitter, too.  The world has moved to a consume and tweet it world.  God, I sound old.  I’m actually okay with some quick sound bytes.  I use Twitter and Google + a lot.  But I don’t always want to limit myself to reading and writing 140 characters, and that’s what I feel like some of the apps on iPads encourage.  Read this article, then post it to FB or Twitter, sometimes without allowing even a comment.

If you’re wondering if software matters, it does.  The way interfaces are designed can determine how we interact with information, whether we’re going to be consumers or producers. No one should just accept what comes with your machine.  Hack it to be the way you want it.  When I get some more time, I might create a better system from scratch, but that’s a summer project.  For now, as they used to say, “small pieces, loosely joined.”

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One Reply to “Rebuilding my Eco-System”

  1. I like your idea of building an “ecosystem” because it really is, after all, about finding a balance between all of the stuff that gets thrown at you vs all of the stuff that you really want/need to read.

    Finding balance, sigh…when is it NOT about that? 🙂

    I often remind myself of something that you wrote about many moons ago, and I am paraphrasing here, about the idea that email is a place where people will want something FROM you, and how you need to have the mental space and the actual time to address those things before you log in. Feed readers like Newsblur and even Twitter are meant to be a way for us to curate the stuff we want to see… but sometimes I feel like I don’t have right amount of time and mental space to take in the stuff I have -chosen- to see (maybe this week was an exception, given that I am a Bostonian by birth, but still).

    And yes, sharing or reposting without commenting? Something important is being lost in that equation, and that something is why I wandered into blogging in the first place: interactions with real people.

    Yeah, I sound old too. 🙂

    B

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