Three issues I like to see them fixed.


I’ve been a paying customer ever since google reader was written off. I am also a developer myself that I do mostly understand what shoes you guys are in. Nonetheless, I have to start pouring my rant on.

  1. Maintenance notice.
    It’s ok for you people shutdown servers for hot-fix. It’s ok I am unable to load feed b/c you guys are doing major upgrade. It’s ok I cannot even connect b/c you people are installing new instance at AWS.

Whatever it might be, just put up a darn notice on top of the site so I can at least find out it is not a good time to use Newsblur. Is it that hard?

  1. Disappearing read item.
    When an article is selected from “All Story”, the articles get hidden if I refresh the page next time. Ok. I got that.

Then could you try not to automatically select a top article from “All Story”, please?
I just don’t know how many times I missed the top story just b/c you guys hide it when reloading. Please, please, please?

  1. Visual clutter.
    Why does a feed have to be so visually cluttered? All those tags, a nice little indicator at the leftmost corner, and site name don’t mean much if you aggregate thousands of articles. All I want is to scroll fast down to a point where I left. Since Newsblur is indeed an one-page app, you can make it fly with removal of those accessories.

I can just live with [title] + [time] per each row. If people absolutely demand for you to be fancy, you can at least setup options to remove those pretties. Please…

I am not asking google-grade performance. You are no match for their infrastructure. Then you can at least try to be transparent and try come forward. I mean, you open up your code base, but cannot open up server status? what’s the problem?


Hey skim, thanks for the feedback. So, first off, you should absolutely expect Google-level performance. That’s why I have graphs on the dashboard. So you know that average load times are near 100ms, which is the cutoff line for excellent performance. And I’m only a solo developer, but my focus on speed is essential to the foundation of a solid news reader.

  1. Maintenance mode - I need a maintenance mode rarely now, and when I do I put up a message. I engineer my maintenance to take only 5-10 minutes, and I only do it late at night on the west coast. If you’re experiencing downtime that I don’t know about, I need to hear about it. The graphs on the dashboard do a great job of showing downtime and degraded performance.

  2. Looks like you have a preference turned on to auto-select the first story. I suggest you go to Manage > Preferences and turn that off.

  3. Take a look at Much less visual clutter.

Also, I think I excel at transparency. Not only do I publish much of what’s going on with NewsBlur on Twitter, but if you want the full firehose, take a look at NewsBlur on GitHub. Nobody maintains that level of transparency, and I think it’s a fine tradeoff between notifying users by spending lots of time in support and bug fixing / feature development.

Thanks Samuel for taking time to reply. I appreciate CEO himself came out and replied my rambling. If you could aim high, that’s good for me and you. I’ll wait and see. Until then…

  1. Last night was particularly painful to load. I only had vague idea of how your backend was setup so I did everything I could; ping constantly to check if my connection was severed, used vpn service for better connectivity, pulled internet connection from my router then connected to a pc.

Not-a-thing worked.

Next time I will make sure I look at the dashboard to find out if service is maintenance mode. Would you please help me to find where that graph is?

  1. Could you please pinpoint where the mentioned setting is? Things are not clear to me to find out.

  2. Last night was my first time to find out you guys were working on a developer version. It was much pleasant experience to use except the issue #1 hindered it all from happening. Nonetheless, I liked it a ton.

It was your github repo that led me to decide to subscribe. Like I said, I am a developer myself and I understand how much courage & confidence it takes to completely open your commercial project, and that’s why I’m trying to stick around. (I would personally never do that.)

Please show me where to find 1. the graph in dashboard, 2. the option in the setting.

Thank you for taking time to answer.