About this time last year Google closed down its five year-old Google Notebook service. I had been using Notebook for some time and had quite a bit of content in there; I had found it to be a pretty powerful, streamlined tool for note-taking and organisation. Google presumably chose to ‘sunset’ the service because its self-contained nature left little room for it to interact with other of their products in a manner which could generate revenue.
In the wake of Google Reader a number of services have emerged hoping to attract the attention of those who had relied upon it: Feedly, Feedbin, and Betaworks' newly-launched Digg Reader1 all look promising, with the first two of those also being supported by Silvio Rizzi’s best-in-field iOS & OS X app Reeder. It’ll be interesting to see how the RSS ecosystem adapts to the closure of Google Reader, which had become the default standard having killed off smaller services when it launched. I’ll be paying particular attention to how Betaworks draw the balance between their disparate products: a content aggregator (Digg), a link shortener (Bit.ly), the recently purchased read-it-later service Instapaper, and now an RSS reader.
In real terms I don’t think I’ll feel the closure of Google Reader all that significantly; it was technology I accessed almost exclusively through third-party apps (surely another contributing factor in its closure) and that is something that will remain a viable option long after 1 July with the new services stepping in.
Update: no longer operational. ↩︎