FeedDemon 3 is ready for public use, after months spent in a beta version that saw a confusing migration from proprietary online syncing to Google Reader.
That rough patch sorted, FeedDemon remains one of the best desktop RSS and Atom feed catchers. This version contains a lengthy list of changes, including greatly enhanced Twitter connectivity, a tweaked interface that's a bit easier to use, and better tagging and sharing.
FeedDemon has dumped its proprietary synchronization site, Newsgator.com, in favor of syncing with Google Reader. New users won't notice, but older users are likely to lose many unread feeds, since Google can't import feeds with more than 10 unread items. Once synced with Google Reader, unread feeds can again include more than 10 items.
There's also a new, persistent ad placed in the lower-left corner of the interface, and FeedDemon's performance could be a lot better--RAM usage was hefty, and 3GB of RAM didn't prevent occasional program hang-ups.
Twitter feed reading has been baked in because FeedDemon supports authenticated feeds. Hyperlinking and short-URL expansion are automatic, and if you use Twitter as a live news stream, FeedDemon's Twitter link sharing should appeal to you. To set that up, you need to subscribe in FeedDemon to your Twitter feed here.
Tagging, tag clouds, and item sharing get a massive overhaul in FeedDemon 3, with all three features added to the item view and a tag cloud added to the Subscriptions Home view. The interface will look similar to FeedDemon 2.8, but there are many little tweaks to improve its usability.
Flags have been renamed Stars for Google Reader consistency, for example, while the Home page features videos, pictures, and content from your feeds. One smart improvement over Google Reader is that you can view your starred feeds in the folders they came from, instead of in a single "starred items" folder.
We'd like to see performance addressed in future versions, but overall, FeedDemon remains a favorite option for desktop feed management. Let us know your thoughts on the new FeedDemon in the comments below.