Although many of us have been enjoying the speedy new browser from Google, Google Chrome, it's far from perfect. Despite being released from beta status in December, the browser still lacks a handful of features that would make it more of a complete product. One such feature is the browser's lack of support for RSS feeds.

Along with lack of support for RSS, the Chrome browser's Mac version is still underway and there is not a good extension architecture in place. As we discovered earlier, the best way to use add-ons in Chrome is via browser bookmarklets. Along those same lines, there are now two new ways to work with RSS, also by employing the use of browser bookmarklets.

Auto-Detect RSS in Chrome

On the web page http://www.feeds.ramisp.org, there are two bookmarklets available: "View RSS Feed" and Auto-Detect RSS." Drag each of these bookmarklets to Chrome's bookmark bar. Then, whenever you're on a page that has an RSS feed, you just have to hit the "Auto-Detect RSS" button. This will take you to a page where the feed is displayed along with several auto-subscription links up at the top. Alternately, you can just hit "view RSS feed," if you want to see the RSS feed in the browser, but this option didn't always work in our tests.

One of the problems with the ramisp.org bookmarklets, though, is the limited choice of RSS readers they offer underneath the "Subscribe Now!" section. Currently, you have the option to subscribe using Google, Pageflakes, My Yahoo!, and Netvibes. Although that covers many of the popular readers, there are still several that were left out.

Luckily, a commenter on LifeHacker has modified the scripts to include a few more. If you use Newsgator, Podnova, or Odeo, you should grab his bookmarklet instead from http://savanttools.com/feedhelp-bookmarklet.asp.

For Google Reader Users, Google Bookmarklets are Best

However, for Google Reader fans, the best bookmarklets for subscribing to feeds still come from Google themselves. Unlike the above options, Google addresses the issue of sites offering more than one feed. Google provides two bookmarklets to choose from for simple RSS subscribing:

  • ? Subscribe - View the first available feed in Google Reader.
  • ? Show all feeds - Lists all feeds and links them to Google Reader.
  • Google also offers ways to note and share items using bookmarklets, too.

    As handy as all these options are, at best they are still a workaround for what should be a built-in feature. Why wouldn't Google at the very least include an RSS button in Chrome that integrates directly with their own RSS Reader? We don't understand the delay on this design decision - we just hope they are working on correcting this oversight.