KlipFolio

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In the past I have tried out a number of feed readers. Some of them were self contained applications with a three pane view reminding of e-mail clients. In those feed readers the first pane shows the list of feeds, the second shows the current articles and the third shows the excerpt of the article that is included in the feed. In most cases you can click on a button that will show the referenced article in an embedded browser window. The second sort of feed readers I have used are extensions for Mozilla Firefox or Mozilla Thunderbird. One of the better extensions for Firefox was Newsmonster. It looked good and its aggregator was good too. One drawback was that it used a Java applet internally for all its functionality. Loading of this applet was very slow and since it was loaded at the start up of Firefox - back in that time still named Firebird -, the browser took eons to load. Sadly the development of Newsmonster was canceled shortly after the author realized that nearly none would buy the professional version, which contained some scoring system for feeds that none used. Feed Reader Panel and it’s greatly improved derivate Sage are fully written in JavaScript and load much faster. They are simpler but they do their job good enough. I also used ForumZilla which is now incorporated into Thunderbird. It extends Thunderbird with feed accounts. Those look like normal e-mail or news accounts, but contain feeds and their articles. One good point about ForumZilla is that it doesn’t trash old articles. You can ignore a feed for some days and explore it once you have the time and pleasure to do it.

So that’s for what I used up until a month ago when I discovered KlipFolio. KlipFolio is a nifty little application that primarily isn’t meant as a feed reader. To be precise, I discovered KlipFolio somewhen in the past and didn’t take a great notice of it then because it is not a feed reader. KlipFolio sits in your tray and waits to be clicked on. Once you click on it, it appears on your screen. It consists of any number of Klip windows, each showing the contents of its own Klip. The windows itself can be of any size and you can change their skin. It’s not that easy to say what Klips are. In their simplest form they look like feeds - headlines with excerpts of articles. If you click on a headline a browser is opened showing the article. But Klips can be more. I have a Klip that shows me the weather forecasts for the next week in Hamburg. There are also other sorts of Klips such as stock tickers.

The kind of Klips that look like normal feeds can have a more sophisticated configuration. The Klip of ”Wired News” for example allows you to choose from a number of categories. So you only get the articles you are interested in.

Klips are generally free of charge. There are zillions of them at KlipFarm. You can download them and install them into your KlipFolio. From time to time the Klips will contact their servers and fetch new articles or other kinds of data.

One big feature of KlipFolio is the generic feed viewer Klip. You can configure it to read any feed. With this KlipFolio becomes the news center on the desktop.

Here’s a number of Klips I recommend:

When opened my KlipFolio occupies nearly the whole desktop space. It shows me all the current news. I can browse quickly through the headlines and decide whether there is something interesting for me to read. It’s a real time saver.