Do you feel overwhelmed by information sometimes? I do. It’s so hard to stay with the latest news of my favorite topics, but I figured out 5 ways to get them (starting from my favorite): Google Alerts, subscribing email newsletters, RSS, checking websites/social networks and search. Hopefully they can be useful to you, too.
1 Google Alerts
This is my favorite. Google Alerts are email updates of the latest relevant Google results (web, news, etc.) based on your queries – for example, I created alerts for my favorite topics “User Experience Web Design”, “Interaction Design” and “Product Design”, and Google sends email summaries right into my inbox every day. You can choose to get email updates as it happens, daily, or weekly.
If you haven’t heard of it, you have to give it a try :)
2 Subscribe Email Newsletters
I love email newsletters! Fortunately, you can find email newsletter subscriptions in many great websites, such as TechCrunch, Smashing Magazine, Fast Company and Harvard Business Review. You may have noticed that some personal blogs have email subscription, too. Let’s say, if you like my blog and interested in my future posts (subscribe now, in the right side bar :P ), email subscription is a great way. This is how I stay connected with my blog friends – whenever I see an interesting post, I comment under it – then my friends know I still care about them and what they think.
Most information websites have news feeds, and you can use something like Google Reader to track them. Usually, you can get news excerpts or full articles in your Reader. I tried and like it, but simply cannot remember to check feeds, as it requires to check Reader manually, so I almost give up (I only use it whenever I can remember to check feeds).
4 Check Websites/Social Networks
LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook, Sina Weibo, Pinterest… You can get tons of stories from these websites – what’s happening and what’s hot. I check my social networks sometimes, but not very often, as it may take a lot of time (just imagine the unlimited display from Pinterest!)
Search “User Experience” in Google, Bing or any search engine, you can find a lot of stuff. You may get something great and related to what you want, but you have to manually filter lots of unrelated information, which may take lots of time, too.
Of course, there are many more ways to get information related to a certain topic. For example, I have an app called WeChat which pushes tech news to my phone daily. The ways above may save you some time to find latest information regarding your topics, but they may still flood your inbox and make you overwhelmed. Um, in this case, we can just ignore them or go for “delete” directly.