One of the frustrations of the Internet is that stuff moves around, or even disappears altogether. This is particularly irritating if you’ve cited a blog post in your research, only to find that it’s been taken down. A couple of months ago, I wrote about Feedly, an excellent web-based tool for following, organising, and sharing blog content. Well, it’s just got better.
The latest paid version offers integration with Dropbox, allowing you both to back up a list of your blog subscriptions and to store snapshots of posts you’ve tagged or saved for later. So, you effectively get offline access to all your most important content, and it’ll be preserved exactly as it was when you first accessed it.
As you can see here, Feedly has created a ‘vault’ in Dropbox.
The OPML Backup is particularly important. OPML stands for Outline Processor Markup Language – not very snappy, I’ll admit, but this is a file format compatible with most blog readers. If anything happened to Feedly, you could easily import all your subscriptions into another application, all in the matter of seconds. This is a huge boon to those of us concerned about the ephemerality of some web-based tools.
The Pro version of Feedly costs $45pa, but if you rely on blog content, this is a reasonable price to pay for such a useful feature. As I’ve said before, it’s important to support really good tools to ensure their survival.