In my search for the perfect homepage that will allow me to easily access my RSS feeds, I spent a lot of time with Netvibes. Here is a brief look at this very versatile homepage.

 

 

Netvibes - very customizable homepage--but still easy to use "out of the box"

 

 

Pro:

  • Very quick start up and easy to search for content
  • Lots of very usable and versatile widgets (over 180,000 at last count!)
  • One-click minimization/expansion of all widgets
  • Nice design--lots of customization possible
    • color code your widgets by content type (the only homepage that allows this that I know of—which I love)
    • collapse boxes to save space
    • customize the number of recent stories/blogs and how much content to show
  • RSS feeds:
    • Identifies how many hours, days, or weeks it has been since an article was posted
    • Title changes color when you have read the article
    • Settings can be customized to either preview article when you mouse over--or show a few lines
  • If you want to switch from another homepage site and keep the same widgets and RSS feeds, you can

Con:

  • When viewing Web sites that you want to subscribe to, you don't often come across RSS buttons to automatically add that feed to Netvibes (like iGoogle, Pageflakes, and others)
  • Preview of widgets before adding to your page is nice, but a little time consuming
  • Widgets automatically added based on your interests are awful--just do it yourself

Grade: A-

(Rating based on personal opinion)

 

 

 

netvibes_hp.jpg

So, Netvibes definitely gets a thumbs up from me. Like so many of the other homepage sites, it's very quick to get started and you don't need to sign up for an account to play around with it. One nice feature about adding content is that you can choose a different country than the United States when searching for widgets—which makes it more applicable to your needs if you live outside of the U.S. Click the Add Content button at the very top left of the page and see where it takes you.

 

netvibes-widgets.jpg

 

 

I'd love to hear how you like the features and use of this homepage.

 

If you're just jumping in to this series now, you may want to start at the beginning where I talk about what RSS is and the different ways you can subscribe to Web sites that you like to visit frequently. Or just go back to the last few blogs where I talk about one great way to tie everything together--Customizable homepages.