Since I got an iPhone last March (my first smartphone), the way that I access and consume information has changed. While I’ve had an iPad for about 5 months, I hadn’t yet gotten a 3G card from my carrier. There is a big difference between having access to the Internet anywhere and just not being able to do so. The places I go to don’t have reliable free WiFi. The iPhone 4S allows me to tether my iPad for free, because my carrier is CHT in Taiwan and they are partly government-owned, my iPad 2 still hasn’t gotten an 3G card.
Whether you’re a pro social networker or just someone who needs to be kept abreast of a large amount of news, the new software aggregators transform your feeds into an almost magazine-like spread. I’ve mentioned before how I rarely use my iOS devices to do work, but Flipboard allows me to optimize my daily workflow significantly. Here’s how I do it.
It’s just one of those days when I have 1000+ items to read in my feeds.
A great article by Kevin Kelly about literacy vs cyberspace. The main focus of this article was to see the comparison with offline reading and online reading.
I do understand the problem. How does reading a novel in your bed compare to reading blogs through your RSS reader?
First of all, blog readers do follow a lot of blogs. By itself, this means that they aren’t reading every single word. Personally, I tend to separate skimming blogs and reading blogs. Blogs that I read and blogs that I skim.
Not everything is worth to be read. I will read most of the personal blogs, but sometimes they digress and I skim. Most of the blogs I read for work are skimmed. Starred and shelved for later use once something interesting is found. Personally, I find it much more productive to do this through feeds, instead of newspapers.
I don’t think this type of reading compares with reading a book. What we can compare is reading a ebook on a computer/laptop/PDA and reading a book.
I don’t really skim anything that I read in that fashion. I usually prefer buying books in the physical sense, but after the first few hundred books, reading gets expensive, especially if you buy hardcover novels. Ebooks are cheaper and easier to get. I don’t particularly like reading them on my computer though, but hey, it accomplishes what I set out to do.
There is something pleasurable and analog about getting a good book with a cup of tea and leisurely reading. Recently, I’ve read about 5 books in the last week. Some of them physical, some of the electronic.
I think that the most important thing when you get ready to read for reading, is to not be distracted by anything else. By this, I mean that you shouldn’t really read ebooks while being logged on the internet. I disconnect and concentrate solely on the book.
This isn’t always easy, especially when you work from home as a freelance blogger, but it gives you a good respite and refreshens your creative juices. Over the weekend, I’ve managed to read about 4 books. I also got a lot of work done.
My love for reading was fostered at a very young age, when I saw my mother reading voraciously. She in turn taught me the value of reading. Ever since I was a child, I have been reading… voraciously. In time, I developped a personal taste. My mother continued to move on in life, and has now become a published author, which is something I want to accomplish as well.
There is no point in really going on about how fast I read. I do read fast. The better the book, the faster I will read it. There are probably a lot of people out there who read faster than I do.
What are your blogging habits?
What do you use to read your blogs?
Do you spend hours each day reading content?
I’ve been using Google Reader and even though if I was initially put off by the interface, it’s grown on me, just like the Gmail interface. I wish that more people would just publish their whole posts through their feeds instead of excerpts.
I read blogs posts everyday, but contrary to compulsive blog readers, it’s something I really enjoy. I take my time. I rarely comment on blogs. I used to comment a lot. I comment from time to time on blogs of people that I’ve known for a while, and on my own blog, but most of the time, I just read posts diagonally. There are some exceptions of course. Like Dooce. I find Heather’s posts really nifty and I savor them. Some of the bigger blogs don’t even allow comments, so the only way to comment would be to reblog them and send a trackback.
I’ve structured my blog reading as well. The first thing I do is go through the link blogs that I read, like Kottke, Clusterflock and a few others. If there are any interesting links, I blog them. Otherwise I move on. Then I read the blogs that post content. Some blogs like Dosh Dosh, Steve Pavlina and Copyblogger require that I focus completely on them. So I leave these for later.
I’ve got more than a few math blogs that I read. Most of them are from professors. Naturally, I don’t understand everything in their posts, but what I do understand is really interesting. There are art blogs, design blogs, photography blogs and a selection of others. At the last count, I think I’m reading under 200 blogs.
Since I’ve been using Google Reader exclusively to read the blogs I follow, I’ve been able to save time. Therefore I was able to add more interesting reading material to my feeds. I’ve decided to share them in no particular order. The order started as alphabetical, but quickly devolved as I put related blogs next to each other.