blog:RSS Feeds

By CaitdCaitd (1223445522|%a, %b %e at %I:%M%p)


What does RSS stand for?

  • Really Simple Syndication
  • Rich Site Summary
  • RDF Site Summary

How do RSS feeds work?

  • RSS is a protocol that uses XML (eXtended Markup Language)
  • RSS is a group of web feeds that publish changes in web resources like blogs, news headlines, video updates and puts them in a standard format
  • RSS is an open, relatively mature standard developed for the purpose of tracking site updates.
          • There are four standards: RSS0.9* RSS 1* RSS 2* Atom*

o All four do the same things. RSS is about tracking site changes!

Where can I find RSS feeds?

  • The orange icon signals a RSS Feed rss_feeds.jpg
  • You can find RSS feeds by doing the following:
    • Search RSS feed directories by using the query tools we learned in Lecture 1
    • Browsing different search categories
    • Looking on RSS enabled websites for an RSS icon and clicking on it
    • Creating a search query to create an RSS feed by using search engines

RSS Feed Readers

  • RSS Feed readers aggregate all your RSS feeds and put the updates in one spot for you.
  • RSS feeds can be downloaded and read by RSS feed reading software such as:

Why use RSS Feeds?

Quite simply, as a student you are expected to keep up with the news, and in this day and age that can be very time consuming considering that there so many different sources of online news. Students can get their news from video content, online news papers, news search tools, and even blogs. Who has time to constantly check all these different sources? Using an RSS feed reader that tracks all these different updates for you and puts all the updates in one place, is convenient and efficient. It also keeps a busy student focused and on target. No more getting distracted by reading extra news articles and wondering where did that half hour go?

Picking the Right RSS Feed Reader

RSS readers are designed to handle feeds, pulling in appropriately formatted content from a variety of sources
To pick the right RSS feed reader you should ask yourself the following questions:

  • Do you want to be able to check your feeds even when you are offline?
    • If so, you should consider using a stand alone client NewsGator offers a desktop feed reader version that integrates with Microsoft Outlook.
  • Using Web-based RSS feed readers means that you have to be online to have access to your RSS feeds. The benefit to this format is that they offer feed search options.

An example of RSS Feed Reader: Google Reader

  • Many students today have gmail accounts. You do not have to sign up again to use Google Reader, just keep using your same Google account information
  • Google Reader allows you to import your RSS feeds from another reader. There is no need to enter all of that data again.
  • Google has a plethora of other tools and by using a feed reader within the Google umbrella you have access to them all.
  • Google Reader also allows you to create a public page so that other people can subscribe to the same RSS feeds to which you are subscribed.
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