Thursday, July 30, 2009

Time to dump NetNewsWire?

I've been using NetNewsWire as a feed reader for some time now. I just got the following email in my inbox. In case you literally don't have the strength to scroll past it, let me tell you my response: Huh? The mail is long and impenetrable. I just want to keep using NetNewsWire—I have no idea whether that's even possible. I really don't have time to decode two pages of corporate wankspeak. I am now on the lookout for a new feed reader. Suggestions welcome.
You spoke and we listened: in response to customer demand, NewsGator's best-of-breed consumer RSS applications now work with Google Reader. Google Reader will become the online companion to and the synchronization platform for our award-winning RSS reader applications – FeedDemon and NetNewsWire.

In conjunction with this announcement, NewsGator is making changes to several of its consumer RSS Readers. NewsGator will continue to support all its individual end-user applications for enterprise customers. However, NewsGator will continue to develop and support only a sub-set of these applications for free consumer use. FeedDemon and NetNewsWire have new versions for consumers that we encourage you to download as soon as possible. NewsGator’s other individual end-user applications will not continue to be supported for free consumer users after August 31, 2009. Again, all of NewsGator’s individual end-user applications will continue to be supported for paying Enterprise customers.

As part of this transition, NewsGator Online users will need to migrate to Google Reader by August 31, 2009. In addition, NewsGator will no longer support the free versions of NewsGator Inbox, NewsGator Go!, and NewsGator’s RSS features (Shared Clipping Feed, Blogroll, Ratings, Headlines, Browser Toolbar, and Desktop Notifier). NewsGator will also continue to support FeedDemon (for Windows) and NetNewsWire (for Mac and iPhone) for all customers – free or paid. If you have questions as to whether or not you qualify as a paying enterprise customer, please contact your account manager.

With these product changes, we recommend that you take the following actions (to assist you, we have a list of recommendations, step-by-step transition instructions, and informative FAQs on our website):
  • FeedDemon – you may continue to use your current version (synchronization won’t be supported after August 31, 2009). However, we recommend that you download the latest version of FeedDemon and sign-up for a Google Reader account for synchronization. Please refer to our transition instructions for assistance.
  • NetNewsWire for Mac – you may continue to use your current version (synchronization won’t be supported after August 31, 2009). However, we recommend that you download the latest version of NetNewsWire and sign-up for a Google Reader account for synchronization. Please refer to our transition instructions for assistance.
  • NetNewsWire for iPhone Customers – a mobile RSS Reader requires synchronization and a new version of NetNewsWire for iPhone that supports synchronization with Google Reader will be available soon. We will notify you when it is available so that you can download the latest version of NetNewsWire and sign-up for a Google Reader account prior to August 31, 2009.
  • NewsGator Inbox – we will no longer support NewsGator Inbox nor release new versions of the product. You may, however, continue to use your current version (synchronization won’t be supported after August 31, 2009). Please refer to our transition instructions for assistance.
  • NewsGator Online – NewsGator Online will not be available after August 31, 2009. Please transition to Google Reader by August 31, 2009. Please refer to our transition instructions for assistance.
  • NewsGator Go! – NewsGator Go! will not be available after August 31, 2009. Please transition to a new mobile RSS Reader by August 31, 2009. We have included alternate RSS Reader recommendations in the transition instructions on our website.
  • NewsGator’s Shared Clipping Feed – this feature will not be available after August 31, 2009. Google Reader will now provide you with this capability. Please see our FAQs for more information.
  • Blogroll, Ratings and/or Headlines – these services will not be available after August 31, 2009. Please remove these components from any blog or web site. Please see our FAQs for more information.
  • Browser Toolbar or the Desktop Notifier – these features will not work after August 31, 2009, nor will we offer new versions of these features. Please see our FAQs for more information.
Bottom line for you: We keep improving our FeedDemon and NetNewsWire applications, and you now can sync with and use the web based RSS reader you've been asking for. We've been working with the Google team to make these changes as smooth as possible, and they are thrilled to welcome all NewsGator users to the Reader family.

For more information, check out our blog or Google’s blog.

Sincerely,

Greg Reinacker
CTO & Founder
NewsGator Technologies

Thanks, Greg. Goodbye NetNewsWire.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

iPhone exhaustion

I've spent two weeks trying to buy an iPhone. I've now been to four Telstra Shops, and one Telstra dealer. I've left my name on waiting lists at two of them. Depending on the excitability of the salesdroid, there's either an ‘Australia-wide shortage’ or a ‘worldwide shortage’. In any case, I have no iPhone.

I am seriously considering buying one outright from the online Apple Store. Apparently1, I can do that, upgrade my current GSM SIM2, stay on my current plan, and just pay up-front for some monthly data.3

Notes:
  1. Of course, I simply cannot reliably find this out. Surely the following is a FAQ: ‘I currently have a Motorola V3. It's post-contract, and while I suspect I am being reamed by my monthly plan, I am mostly satisfied. I would rather gnaw off a limb than try to decipher the quagmire of plans that you offer, so I will probably buy an iPhone outright from Apple. Is it then just a matter of fronting up to a Telstra Shop and asking for a new SIM?’
  2. Again, apparently it's literally a matter of asking for a new 3G SIM to replace my current SIM. I am sceptical.
  3. By which I mean partake in the Festival of Ream.