Is there any official API for retrieving comments? I know theres an ATOM spec for specifying the comment url and sending them but I've not seen one for retrieving them.

If there is one, what are the RSS readers that support it? I've never really got into using an RSS reader because I always want to read the comments, and that means I have to visit the website anyway.

Also I'm using the new Firefox with LiveMarks, which kinda gives me the best of both worlds.

If the idea is to promote rich clients instead of web interfaces that definatly something I would look for.

I'd like a Channel9 rich client, a Slashdot rich client etc, but without resorting to screen scraping.