Google Chrome is a good browser. A speedy, delightful little browser. Sure, the themes and fancy applications that Mozilla offers aren’t there, but the crash rate is much lower, the dynamic tabs are sweet and you’re warned when you may be visiting a harmful website. In fact, perhaps it’s the no-frills approach that has kept Chrome as functional as it is.

Whatever the case, no-frills is still no-frills, and in an era of endless options there will always be those that try to add a little “flava” to the things that lack it. As a result, add-ons to Chrome are available via browser bookmarklets. Because of popular demand, you can now even employ them in order to manage two new ways to work with RSS feeds.

RSS in Chrome: It's Automatic

The two bookmarklets offered on are called: "View RSS Feed" and “Auto-Detect RSS." To use them you simply drag each one to Chrome's bookmark bar. Then, whenever you're on a page that has an RSS feed, click the "Auto-Detect RSS" button and presto! You’re taken to a page where the feed is displayed along with several auto-subscription links up at the top. Click the "view RSS feed" button if you want to see the feed in the browser, but beware that there are still a few bugs being worked out with this option..

Unfortunately, nothing is without problems and one of the challenges - in addition to the buggy View RSS Feed button - is the limited choice of RSS readers offered. Currently, you have the option to subscribe using Google, Pageflakes, My Yahoo! and Netvibes. So what about the little guys?

Fortunately for all you fans of the little guys, a gracious commenter on LifeHacker has modified the scripts to include a few more. If you prefer Newsgator, Podnova or Odeo, you should grab his bookmarklet here.

Google Still Does It For Us

Of course, the favorite bookmarklets for subscribing to feeds come from none other than the infamous Google team themselves. In addition to offering more than one feed, Google's bookmarklets enable a user to note and share items as well. Through Google, your two choices for RSS subscribing are:

  • View the first available feed in Google Reader
  • Lists all feeds and link them to Google Reader.

Though it would of course be nice to see this functionality integrated directly into Chrome, whether or not that day ever actually comes doesn't seem to be much of a concern. So far, the workarounds seem to be faring quite well.