Answer one: I didn’t have to look very hard. Though a number of decent-looking alternatives are being recommended and promised, the one that seemed most ready to go now is Feedly. You can import your items directly from Google Reader, it has an app I like, and it’s nice to use. It’s not as quick as Reader was on the web or the app, but it’s quicker than the other things I tried. Bonus: it’s easier to organize your feeds into different folders, so now things are nice and clean for me.
Answer two: The same place as ever- my RSS feed. I’m hoping that if you currently read this blog in Google Reader, you’ll be willing to take it with you when I migrate. I know a lot of people are saying that Feedburner (the Google-run service that powers my RSS feed) is doomed, but it’s not dead yet. I have a hunch since Google still uses Blogger, and all the official Google Blogger blogs use Feedburner, it will be safe. But I’m keeping an eye on Feedblitz all the same.
And if you aren’t planning on migrating to a new feed reading service, I’ve set up a Twitter feed that will automagically post whenever I write a new blog entry. I might add other things, too, though that would likely be overkill. I’ve also got subscribe by email and Feedly options on my subscribe page.
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All in all, the death of a service like Reader is an important reminder that you can’t really count on free services- even (and maybe especially) if they’re run by a large company like Google- to stick around. And it’s one of the reasons I like maintaining a blog, even if it’s not as convenient as just posting everything on Facebook. You never know when they’ll get shut down or change and you’ll lose everything you’ve put there. I’m glad I have options in this case. Iranians? Not so much.