Monday, January 25, 2010

My Gwynne Dyer feed - at last

Gwynne Dyer is a curmudgeonly military historian journalist. He's 66, I think I read him when I was a kid in Montreal. You can't read him there any more, Conrad Black owns much of Canada's press and he doesn't like Dyer.

I've followed him for years, but he's remained resolutely stuck in the early 1990s. His web articles are ".txt", not ".html". Feeds are impossibly futuristic for Dyer, which is a problem since he publishes erratically.

I tried monitoring him with ChangeDetection and Page2RSS and Feedity, but not Dappit. They were all finicky, and nothing worked for long. I finally gave up last year.

Today, though, Dyer 2010 has a Google generated feed: http://www.google.com/notificationservice/webchanges/webfeeds/3585261901611337376

All you need to do to get a feed like this is to put a page URL into the Google Reader "Add a Subscription box". If GR can't find a feed, it creates one.

It doesn't show anything yet because I just created it. It won't show anything until Dyer posts something. For now though I see quite a few 2009 and 2010 articles I can catch up on. I'll use the "Note in Reader" function to comment on those I like, you can get a feed on my Google Reader items here: My Google Reader Shared items (feed).

Update: Oops. "note in reader" doesn't work with .txt pages.

Update 3/13/10: The Google Feed isn't working. I suspect they can't process .txt files served up by http! An anonymous commenter suggests using the NZ Herald Feed for Dyer and reveals he has a twitter feed as well. I'll try both.

Incidentally, most of my posts show up when I do a Google search scoped to kateva.org. This one doesn't. Curious.

2 comments:

Anonymous said...

Thanks for this,

just to clarify, you are certain the Google feed will update when Dyer begins updating his website again?

Also, the NZ Herald publishes Dyer, and provides a feed at

http://www.nzherald.co.nz/gwynne-dyer/news/headlines.cfm?a_id=153

And he has a twitter feed http://twitter.com/GwynneDyer from which he publishes links to his stuff.

John Gordon said...

You're right to suspect the Google updates aren't working. I suspect his .txt publishing isn't supported. I'll try your suggestions!