In my quest for more freedom from companies that don’t take privacy too seriously (such as Facebook, Inc. or Google), I found a fantastic FOSS replacement for Google Reader: Tiny Tiny RSS. It does everything important that Google Reader does and even has its own little syncable native Android app called ttrss reader (available through the Google Android Market).
The only additional feature I’d appreciate is a Reader Play-style view for very important tasks, such as scrolling through large amounts of animated gifs or lolcats quickly. Tiny Tiny RSS’s code seems to be clean and concise, though, so it might not be that much work to make such a feature if I ever find the time (which won’t happen).
But what does this teach us about the greater market forces currently at play out there?
- Tiny Tiny RSS is a direct competitor to Google Reader, a tool that allows Google to create pretty accurate personal profiles of people’s interests and then make money selling targeted advertisements.
- ttrss-reader is an Android application, running on Google’s own mobile phone operating system. It ties into Tiny Tiny RSS
- ttrss-reader is available from Google’s own Android Market, so not only are Google not censoring their competitor’s product, Google are even paying for the bandwidth their competitor is using.
- This could never happen on iPhone, iPad or other Apple products that come with Jobsian censorship. If a developer tried competing with an Apple product on Apple’s platform, Apple would simply not let them into the App Store.
- Does this mean that Google is, gasp, a fairer and gentler market player than Apple? Mystifying!