A while back I wrote that RSS sucks, and now that I’ve had some more time to think about it I’ve come to a deeper and more nuanced conclusion: RSS Really Sucks. The point was driven home recently as I read articles by people arguing that IE7 from Microsoft does RSS well enough to kill off a few standalone aggregators. I suppose, although that’s a little like saying that buggy whips drive milk-wagons so well that people will soon stop using willow branches to goad horses.
Why? Because, as Scott Karp points out, the IE7 RSS implementation is as glorified “favorites” — bookmarks, in other words. And they are particularly irritating bookmarks, ones that continually change and needle you as more “information” (I use that advisedly) comes beeping and streaming into your computer.
So, while IE7 may kill off a few standalone RSS aggregators, it doesn’t matter. Practical RSS aggregators remains so badly broken for most people that it will be impossible to tell the difference between live aggregators and dead ones.