While Web logs, or blogs," typically are available in a Web browser, many people prefer to use specialized newsreader programs. I have been using SharpReader, a free blog newsreader for Windows, and I am quite happy with it. However, some readers of this newsletter may prefer to use a specialized Web service.
Bloglines is a free online service that makes it easy to keep up with your favorite blogs and newsfeeds. With Bloglines, you can subscribe to the RSS feeds of your favorite blogs, and Bloglines will monitor updates to those sites. You can read the latest entries easily within Bloglines. All you need to do is use your normal Web browser and go to http://www.bloglines.com and then log in.
Unlike other aggregators that require you to download and install software, Bloglines runs on standard Web servers and requires no installation. Because your Bloglines account is accessible through a Web browser, you can access your account from any Internet-connected machine. You can access BlogLines from home, the office, a library or school, or an Internet café. This is an excellent method of keeping up to date with your favorite blogs when traveling. It works well for those who prefer to not install software on their computers. It is also a good way for the newcomer to start looking at with blogs.
Since it is Web-based, BlogLines works with Windows, Macintosh, Linux, and other operating systems. Best of all, BlogLines is free of charge. Registration is also simple. You can also cancel at any time. At this time there is no advertising on BlogLines, but the company does say that text advertising and additional fee-based services will be launched in the near future.
BlogLines is available at http://www.bloglines.com.