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Thursday, September 08, 2005

RSS Feeds

You've probably heard about this but don't know much about it. I was exactly the same, until today. I knew it was important to allow people to access RSS feeds of blogs and news sites, but I didn't know how it works. I knew that a lot of people use it to keep up to date. So today I did a bit of investigation into RSS and what I discovered amazed me.

Why haven't I been doing this earlier??

RSS stands for Really Simple Syndication and uses a particular format called XML that is designed for sharing headlines and other web content. These headlines and content are picked up by an RSS reader, that is either integrated into a web page or browser, or a standalone application. A reader allows you to subscribe to various RSS-enabled websites, and every time they update their website with a new blog post or article, it's detected by your RSS reader and you are notified that there's a new entry for you to read. Because it's already detected this information, it has already downloaded that information for you, ready to display.

So instead of going to the website to see if there's any updates, or to read the updates, all that information is in your RSS reader, thus saving you the time and the bandwidth, if you are conscious of how much data you use with your internet connection. You can read the relevent information straight away, or have it sit there until you have the time to read it.

I've added all my favourite sites to a RSS reader I've downloaded (Sharpreader - it's free), and now every time those sites are updates, I'm automatically notified. This saves me from having to go visit those sites on a regular basis to see if they've updated it.

As I said, why haven't I been doing this earlier! *sigh*

Now I can spend more time on other things, like gaming, or looking for new sources of information, or writing, or... whatever I want! It's great. Get into it yourself, if you aren't already. You'll love it.


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Posted on 9/08/2005 01:58:00 PM Backlinks


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