Things you need in your house

Habits: RSS feeds

It took me long enough. RSS feeds are such a winner, and allow you to assimilate such a gigantic amount of information very quickly, but for me, there was definitely a "tipping point" after which, I have become a serial 'adder'.

Phil wrote a post a while back about changing from Bloglines (who have been in interminable Beta mode, and whose Beta, frankly, I don't like) over to Google Reader and Yes, I suppose I could give it a go. I'm afraid I'm a bit of a Luddite in that I tend to become wedded to an application that I like. It takes a mountain of evidence to get me to change. People complain that Bloglines has hiccups and forgets you have read the last 200 posts in everything you're subscribed to but for me, that's a petty whinge. Just, you know. Click on "Read all" and choose to go visit the actual blogs of the few you honestly do review every day. Quit yer whinin', as Ham would say.

The other funny side effect of not actually bothering to go to sites, and reading whole posts in an RSS reader is I have almost no clue as to the design of friends' sites anymore. The actual design of the site is realistically redundant. Which is a bit odd, when you spend any time thinking about it. Particularly with art or design sites - it was the look of the site as well as the content, that first dragged you in - yet here you are, stripping everything out and subjecting it to an HTML 1.1 era interface.

Compared to many, I'm sure my collection of feeds is minuscule (67). I do continue to visit a ton of physical sites on top, but I jumped on the RSS bus verrrry late and was characteristically sniffing round it for a long time. As I say, I think I reached a point where now, if I see something I like the look of, I almost immediately set it up as a feed, but that behaviour only started about half way through 2008. Before that, to be honest I'm slightly hazy on what I actually used it for at all. 

Anyway, in the interests of *absolutely no one in particular* I thought I'd list the feeds that I absolutely never miss on a daily basis, because having speedy, instant delivery of "interesting stuff" has genuinely made me think differently, in some cases. There aren't very many, in fact, so I periodically have to zero the whole lot in the hope that any feeds I haven't looked at for ages will actually load if I click on them.

Green stuff:
No, not money.
This is a new one, gathered from digging around after reading something really positive and joy filled about the future sent by one of my friends (heh). Looks fairly good so far.
Climate Progress
When I'm feeling brave, it's absolutely in the top tier of places to go to find out what's going on, and what's being said.


Not all of them. I have a ton of friend links. But these two might be of interest. The reason I have friend feeds is to catch up with my friends. So they're not really of wider interest (plus oddly, I almost feel like it would be invading their privacy).
Haddock blogs
What it says on the tin. My blood brothers and sisters in lackadaisical sin.
Rich Herring
Rich really does update *every single day*. He's obviously a lunatic but often has interesting things to say about some life minutia he has encountered in the journey through his day.

Design / illustration and animation
I like it.
Since I started to check in with design and illustration blogs, I have felt much better in myself. It must hit something very different in your brain. I've even considered asking for a print for my birthday by a designer who specialises in typography. I used to do art at school (a B at 'O' level, woohoo) and somehow, got busy, ending up in that frame of mind where art is an ossified form, and one only  really sees or appreciates things that have been, rather than things that are. So, if you too are in that slightly rubbish place, why not subscribe to a couple of arty aggregators such as these:
It's Nice that
Is a British blog which I get the impression is checked out by enough people that it is becoming something of a brand in its own right. They bought some ad space on Piccadilly Circus a wee while ago. They post more than several times a day, and there's nearly always something interesting in the eclectic mix. sometimes, there's something completely fantastic, like Spacesick's glorious film/book covers (which lead me to....)
Olly Moss's Flickr Stream
He does alot of this stuff just for fun. He's on a real retro trip right now too which appeals to my 1950's design sensibilities. Blimey, he has such clean, crisp ideas. Take a look at his alternative poster for American History X.
I think I picked this up from my brother, Owen. It has a genially celebratory feel to it - but also, extremely knowledgeable about the market. I would guess a hell of alot of people follow this from the industry. Anyway, Drawn celebrates a whole bunch of animation as well as childrens book illustrators and all sorts. It's a great aggregator to follow.
I'm not on Ffffound because I've never bothered digging around for an invite. It's good, but I rarely go to be honest. I get enough thrown at me already.

Social / web news:
You'd imagine I'd bombard myself with this stuff, wouldn't you? Well. No (ish). I've got a whole bunch of emails coming in from Net Imperative, The register, Silicon Alley Insider, social Networking Watch, blah blah blah.... a slew of Google News alerts on key brand names. Wh'ever. Anyway, there's one source which invariably picks up on anything new that's going down in the world of social apps and re-blirts research, usually with commentary. Here you go, it's:
Read, Write, Web
Still, not enough mobile in. NOT ENOUGH MOBILE IN. the  mobile ones don't have enough web in, and vice versa. What's wrong with you people, don't you get that you need to be  reporting in an entirely holistic way? But, to be fair, they do try very hard.

So there are a bunch more people in specific niches who I catch up on every now and then but... you know, nothing daily.

Dave Hill's London Blog
He's doing a good job of keeping me up to date with all the pop-star-mayor horseshit but more important, actual London News. About London, not news *in* London (if you see what I mean).

So. Everything else tends to update more randomly, or else it updates regularly but I just can't be bothered to look at it all the blummen time.

So there you are.