I just finished some spring cleaning of the feeds on my Bloglines aggregator. I was subscribing to 111 feeds on everything from general blogs, to teaching, to librarianship, to technology, to just random stuff that caught my eye. I didn’t start off with 111 feeds. The number just kind of grew organically over time. Over the last few months I came to the clear conclusion that somewhere along the line I crossed over my information threshold and that–111 was too many. One thing that I like about Bloglines is that it is every easy to group similar feeds together in folders. Over time I came to realize that the overwhelming volume of information that I was allowing to be pushed out to me caused me to click on whole groups of feed posts to clear them out even though I hadn’t read them. When I’m overwhelmed by anything, I tend to shut down and I dealt with the overwhelming amount of information by doing just that … Shutting it all down.
After my purge, I’m down to a still sizable 70 feeds. In the past, I’ve kept up with 70 feeds without getting overwhelmed so I’m going to go back to that number and live with it for a while.
How many RSS feeds do you subscribe to? Does your optimum number change over time depending on what’s happening in the rest of your life or is it pretty constant?
I also have packrat/hoarding tendancies so I find it easy to add feeds and much tougher to send them to the trash bin. How do you handle the dynamics of subscribing and un-subscribing?