I realize that I am not a fan of the OPML format for distributing RSS/Atom feeds. It's a great idea - and something very necessary, but the way it works leaves something to be desired.
Bloglines has been my main news reader for well over a year now. It's not that I am unhappy with Bloglines, but the release of the Google Reader (in Beta, of course) has prompted me to try it and look at other options.
Maybe it's just me, but Bloglines isn't really all that easy to leave. Here's what their help says about exporting feeds:
How Can I Export My Subscriptions?
From the My Feeds page, click the Edit link at the top of the left panel. There will be a link to export your subscriptions in OPML format.
What's OPML Format?
OPML format is an XML format. For more information on the OPML format, click here. [which goes to a another even less unhelpful site, at least for ordinary users who aren't interested in developing for the OPML format]
I'm wondering if Bloglines is hoping that a lot of casual users will decide that the whole thing looks too difficult and that they'll give up on the foolish idea of trying different blog readers.
For example, why doesn't Bloglines mention that for most people using non-IE browsers, they are much better off right-clicking on that export subscriptions link, and saving the target file, rather than opening it?
Then there's the issue of the Bloglines-generated OPML being incompatible with Google.
I ended up using NetNewsWire 2 (Mac only software) as an intermediary between Bloglines and Google, because I remembered they used to have good import/export features and was curious about testing them out again too. And that approach worked well for me.
It's still too soon for me to have an opinion on the Google Reader or NetNewsWire. After using them for about a week, I should have a better idea.