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Smarter Content, and Google AdSense

Saturday, August 20, 2005

As FeedBlitz has blown through the 1,000 subscriber mark (and then some), I've taken the chance to step back a little to ensure that the core deliverables - well formatted emails from feeds - were still ok.

There is still room for improvement, and a number of changes have gone into today's build that will make a dramatic difference for some publishers. One in particular is worth noting.

The largest change is to take HTML encoded post text in preference to plaintext from feeds where both are present in a single post; previously the content used was selected on a first-come, first-served basis. As a result, some publishers who use Google AdSense in their feeds who did not see them in the email before (because FeedBlitz was picking up the plaintext copy) will now do so as of today. Email formatting on posts for these users will also improve greatly.

At this point, everyone using Google AdSense for feeds in combination with FeedBlitz should see the ads in the emails (if you don't, please email me). Bloglet, of course, doesn't support Google AdSense for feeds at all. Ah well. Yet another reason to switch.

Other than that, minor changes have been put in to better handle feeds without descriptions and posts without titles (Dave Winer's "Morning Coffee Notes" blog is an example of this). Also new today is code to fix up relative image links. Some posters (or their blog editors) are not using the full URL for images, such as http://mysite.com/foo.jpg Instead, such feeds simply have image links like "/foo.jpg" which won't render well when the feed isn't viewed from that server - which is what happens with FeedBlitz. So FeedBlitz now attempts to fix this up for you, gentle reader, so that you don't have to (and also so that you don't think FeedBlitz is broken either :-) ).



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