Google has been known to shut down old services now and again in its so-called spring cleanings. But nobody seriously expected it to shut down Reader, its trusty and popular cloud-based RSS reader, despite it being in maintenance mode for years. When the shutdown announcement came, it hit the RSS community like an earthquake, with news junkies scrambling for replacements.
I was one of those users, and if I learned one thing from this, it's not to rely on a free service from a behemoth corporation for mission-critical work (tech writers really do need RSS). I found a service developed and run for profit, by just a single, committed individual: NewsBlur, by developer Samuel Clay. This online news reader offers a sophisticated interface, machine-learning, story sharing, and is everything Google Reader should have been, had Google taken a more lasting interest in it. A paid account will run you $24/year, but a feature-limited free version is available, too.