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July 1, 2013 » 5:20 pm

Seeking Google Alerts Replacement

Google Reader officially died today. I was not one of the legions of people who expressed dismay and displeasure at Google’s decision. I can’t argue with a company’s desire to focus, I don’t have any insider information as to why they made that decision, and I’m not interested in participating in tech punditry theater.

My general feeling is that, if a service that’s valuable goes away, the marketplace will replace it. That’s exactly what happened here. Feedly and several other companies moved very quickly to fill that void. I migrated to Feedly shortly after Google made its announcement, and while the service has some warts, my overall feed reading experience is better than it was with Google Reader. Score one for markets!

Despite my overall apathy toward the shift, I was annoyed to receive a notice this morning saying that Google Alerts no longer supports RSS feeds. I suppose it validates speculation that Google is de-emphasizing RSS, as I see no substantial technical reasons why it should kill what amounts to another serialization format.

So it goes. I’ve decided to use this as an opportunity to find a replacement stalking personal dashboard notification tool. Unlike Google Reader, Google Alerts has been gradually fading on its own for months now, so this is a good excuse to find something better. I’ve already been using Newsle for several months now, which I like quite a bit, but it’s centered around people, and I want something for topics as well.

Any suggestions?

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8 Responses to “Seeking Google Alerts Replacement”

  1. Have you tried http://www.hinto.co ?
    It's a highly visual desktop web app that allows you to select which websites contents to keep up with.

  2. Thanks for the suggestion, Cosmin. Hinto isn't what I'm looking for. I want something that scours the web for search terms and that notifies me when it finds relevant content.

  3. Thanks for your reply, Eugene!
    I understand your need for a tool that scours the web for search terms. However, would you consider using Hinto as a separate tool? If you are not convinced by Hinto's offering, can you please tell me what are its shortcomings ?

  4. I discovered Alert publication's demise this morning. I'm trying out http://www.talkwalker.com/alerts as an alternative.

    ( also, I linked your blog from mine http://blog.johnruble.net/?p=191 )

  5. Thanks for the suggestion, John! Talkwalker looks promising (and they also found me on Twitter). I'm going to check it out.

  6. Hi eekim, you can check http://mention.net too [Disclaimer: I've just joined their team]. Let me know if you have any question.

  7. I'm going to try out TalkWater since there doesn't seem to be anything else!

    I'm hoping that this is on Feedly's to-do list, though…

  8. I think this might be helpful. Alerts to RSS are about to launch a replacement for Google Reader providing an RSS feed for Google Alerts at http://alertstorss.com

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