UPDATE: More FAQs have been added HERE, since version 1.1 was released.
While we keep our heads down on version 1.1, I thought it would be helpful to post an article with some brief answers to frequently asked questions about The Early Edition.
Frequently asked questions
I’m new to this RSS thing. What does it mean?
RSS stands for ‘Really Simple Syndication’ (really it does!). An RSS feed is basically just a file or script sitting on a server somewhere which contains the information about that website’s articles, blog posts or whatever other web content it provides. It basically tells The Early Edition what to present on the page. And since you can combine whatever RSS feeds you like into your News Sources list, The Early Edition really becomes your own personal newspaper.
How do I find RSS feeds to add to my News Sources list?
In version 1.1 we’ll be introducing ‘feed discovery’ which means you’ll be able to enter a website and then The Early Edition will search it for valid RSS feeds and then suggest them in a list so you can just tap whichever you’d like to add.
But for now, go to your favorite websites and look for either the bright orange RSS icon (pictured) or a text link with the word RSS in it. In the big news websites these are often in the footer somewhere and they often have a wide variety of feeds to choose from (ie, front page, sport, technology, popular articles etc).
When you’ve found an RSS feed link you’d like to copy:
• hold your finger down on the link until a menu appears
• select ‘Copy’
• open The Early Edition
• press the ‘+’ button
• paste the feed into the text field.
Why do some articles have the full story and images in them, while others just have a headline and a short sentence or two of body text?
The amount of content in RSS feeds is completely dependent on the RSS publishers. Some will choose to include the entire articles as well as images, whereas others may include very little. Unfortunately that’s not something we have control over, which is why we’ve included the ‘View original’ button at the top of the full screen article view. Tapping this will take you directly to the original website where the article is published and you’ll have access to the whole thing.
Why isn’t page turning as quick as it is in iBooks?
Due to the complexity of the page layouts we’re using in The Early Edition, there is a lot more to render on our next/previous pages, so it does take a little longer for the page to turn. Having said that, we are always working to improve this and in 1.1 we have managed to improve the speed of both page turns and the time it takes to fetch articles due to some work we’ve done under the hood.
Why are there a lot more articles on the first day than on subsequent days?
When The Early Edition fetches new articles, it looks for all articles that have been posted since the last fetch. On the first day there hasn’t been a previous fetch, so it collects all articles from each feed in the News Sources list, even if they were posted many days ago. Then on the next day it will only fetch articles posted since yesterday. If you find that there isn’t enough content for you on day 2, the best thing to do is look for more feeds to add to your News Sources list.
Does The Early Edition support read/unread status for articles?
Not yet. This was a deliberate decision originally, in order to keep the newspaper metaphor uncluttered, but we are keen to add this feature very soon due to popular demand. Once we’ve finished 1.1 we’ll be deciding on the roadmap for future updates.
What about options for sharing articles?
At the moment we support Instapaper and emailing of article links, but we are planning Twitter, Facebook and other sharing options soon.
What about saving my place when I quit the app and come back again?
Great idea! There have been a lot of requests for this and we are keen to implement it, so stay tuned for this in a future update.
What other features are coming in version 1.1?
• Google Reader/OPML feed import
• Feed groups (for categorizing your feeds into sections)
• Feed discovery (as mentioned above)
• Speed and performance enhancements
I love The Early Edition! How can I express this enough?
We love hearing from customers who are enjoying our work. One way is to send a quick email to let us know. Another is to post a review of The Early Edition on the App Store!
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