Tom Insam

Stupid Feed Tricks

Ok, so RSS feeds turn out to be even more amazingly broken than I’d assumed that they were. I’d like to pull out some favourites, but they’re all amazing and you should read the whole list.

Brent does point out another horrible failure case, which is hotel / airport / etc gateways that hijack your HTTP requests and redirect you somewhere else. This is so annoying. Not that I have an alternative. Does lead to some nasty app failure cases, though.

When a feed reader gets a permanent redirect, it’s supposed to take that to mean: “Hey, the feed moved. It’s over here now. Save the new URL and use the new one from now on.”

And if you don’t do that in your reader, and your feed reader is popular enough, smart people who quite rightly care about proper behavior will call you out. You have to do that.

Google Reader never used to do that. It would drive me crazy, because I move my feed around a lot. (I’m crazy). I guess this is why.

Most days, I’m mildly astonished that the internet actually works.