RSS offers the possibility to experience the web in a more efficient manner. Instead of visiting your favorite web site sites several times a day, they will tell you when they have been updated. If you search for information daily you can save a significant amount of time by using RSS feeds.
To read RSS feeds one use an aggregator. An aggregator works similar to an e-mail program. The difference is that with RSS you decide what you want to read, i.e. no spam. As for e-mail there are both web based aggregators, think Hotmail, and software aggregators, think Outlook.
Web Based RSS Readers
The advantage with web based RSS aggregators are that one can access them from any computer that has Internet access. Two well-known web based RSS readers are Bloglines and My Yahoo. Bloglines is considered to be the leading service by many industry observers. For example, it is highly recommended by Walt Mossberg of the Wall Street Journal. We at Hot Zoup also recommend Bloglines. By including an RSS reader into My Yahoo, Yahoo has created a very good service for its users. Another alternative is NewsGator Web Edition. It offers some nice features that highlight the most popular posts, according to NewsGator users, in its interface and the ability to rate individual posts.
Software Based RSS Readers
There are stand-alone software RSS aggregators. Some of the popular ones are NetNewsWire, Newgator, Radio Userland and FeedDeamon. In addition to specialized RSS readers, programs like Mozilla Firefox and Thunderbird have integrated RSS aggregators. Also, there are plug-ins to Microsoft Outlook, that let the user follow RSS feeds in special folders in their e-mail program. This is a good way to follow RSS feeds in an office environment.
Also, please see email software for send email from RSS Readers.
RSS Search Engines
There are several services that lets you search RSS feeds. Some of the more popular ones are Technorati, PubSub and Feedster. Technorati focuses on weblogs, while PubSub lets users search several sources.
Find RSS Feeds
To find new RSS feeds services, look for the orange XML-button on your favourite site or a text link saying “RSS feed” or something of the same meaning. If you want to find RSS feeds to weblogs, a blog directory like Blogwise or eatonweb could be a good place to start. The service Kinja.com is another starting point. Kinja organizes RSS feeds into categories depending on the content of the RSS feed. Kinja is a good place to begin to explore the world of RSS feeds and blogs.
RSS Quick Facts
Who uses RSS?
More and more people are using RSS. According to a survey by Pew Internet & American Life Project 5 percent of the American population used RSS aggregators in 2004. This was the first time Pew asked that specific question, but the number indicates an impressive rate of user adoption.
The person who uses RSS today is likely an early adopter of technology desks and services or information professional. But the benefits of RSS is driving adoption into the mainstream, as users can stay up to date on current topics by subscribing to so called ‘RSS feeds’. As RSS feeds are accessed by subscription, there is no problem of spam. This has made RSS a very good alternative to e-mail newsletters for many users and publishers.
Different flavours of RSS
For most RSS aggregators the dialect of RSS used make no difference as they understand the most common ones. The most common ones are RSS 0.91, RSS 2.0 and Atom. Often they are represented by the orange XML icon.. What RSS actually stands for is debated. It is an abbreviation of either Really Simple Syndication, Rich Site Summary or RDF Site Summary, even though the most commonly referred to is Really Simple Syndication.
Headlines or full posts
RSS feeds can either include the headlines and a short snippet of text or entire articles. Many newspapers publish headlines through RSS, while many weblogs publish their entire articles in RSS. The reason for this difference is that, currently, the tracking possibilities of advertising in RSS feeds are insufficient to attract major advertisers. But services like Feedburner there are possibilities to track the number of subscribers to an RSS feed. The development has lead to some publishers putting advertising, often in the form of text links to sponsors, in their feeds. Many bloggers do publish their full posts via RSS as their business models, if they have one, are not to attract advertising revenue.
Or try our Free reader for Windows XP and the .NET Framework supports RSS, fast file recovery software, Atom, and Comment-API.