Saturday, October 02, 2010

Take that Times-of-India

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I read the almost every morning. I like to consume the news and the rest of the “masala”  with my “Cup’O Joe”. However, people running the newspaper’s electronic version seem to have forgotten that they are in the business of delivering news and not advertisements (…purely from a consumer point of view). I am aware there are ads everywhere, but nytimes.com, wsj.com, they do it “unobtrusively”.
Why don’t you try, TOI?
TimesOfIndia_normal

Almost everytime I am reading the news a thousand ads get loaded; I am already distracted by the dancing silhouettes trying to “refi” my mortgage at ridiculously low rates on the left, TATA tea herbs growing all over the page from the right, a carousal of eligible bachelors and bachelorettes’ faces streaming across my screen on the top and a huge Flash modal enticing me to swim with pretty women on some exotic cruises (or buy an HP computer). As if this weren’t enough, I get a thousand javascript errors and pop-up blocked alerts every two seconds.

Come on guys….I just woke up! Gimme a break!

Well, I am guessing “TOI” won’t, so I’ve taken matters in my own hand. I built an Adobe AIR application that leaves all this junk behind and gets to the meat of the matter.

I get the available RSS from http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/rss.cms and I load it in the dropdown box
TOI-Reader-Step1
Selecting the channel will give you a list of news articles. I just get the appropriate RSS feed from TOI, parse it and show you the description and link.
TOI-Reader-Step2
Then clicking on the story will change the screen over to let you read the news.
TOI-Reader-Step3
If you’d like to get the source (maybe you have another newspaper in mind?) send me an email or post a comment here. I will gladly oblige.

You will be able to get the file from from http://www.box.net/shared/izb2q93r4x or select it from the widget below.


12 comments:

Anirudha Phatak said...

Excellent effort, Kromanium!
In the light of what you've done, my reaction to these intrusive pop-ups looks rather extreme - I stuck to those sites that do not irritate me as much!
However, if you expect TOI to tone their thirst for ad-money down, think again.

Srikanth Kasi said...

This is a very good piece of work dude!!! There are no distractions while you read something important....I like it.

Mayuresh Unde said...

Great work! I always find those ads really irritating but never thought one could do anything about it. Now we have a nice and simple solution for it. Although TOI may not like it..-:)

bittu said...

Nice and clean...

Anonymous said...

You have heard of AdBlock, no?

And really, an AIR application? Why not just use Google Reader or any number of RSS readers?

Le sigh.

Amruta D said...

@Anonymous: its not about using adblock ... have you heard of firefox, it can block javascripts and flash also! Ads seem to be the motivation, I think the author meant to develop "something" purposeful using AIR! learn to appreciate

@Techie: was good to go through the code. simple enuf 4 me to understand. thanks

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