March 26, 2004

feed me my rss!

Maybe you've heard about it. RSS is the Internet technology that's kick-ass and makes keeping updated about news and goings-on on the Net quick and easy. Some are hailing it as the "new web." Well, I finally (finally, finally) got on the bandwagon to see what the hoopla's all about.

For those who don't know, RSS is typically used to take news from websites and pulls them all together to make them easily readable in a single place. The whole idea is that information comes to you rather than you going to retrieve it.

I just wanted to have someplace where I could read news headlines without having to go through each of my bookmarks. I downloaded a bunch of clients, trying to see what I liked; the ones that show headlines in OS X's Dock I didn't like very much: I wanted to see at least some text from the stories. When I came upon NetNewsWire (OS X, the Lite version is free), I was pretty much happy, and I've been using it since. (I haven't tried out any Windows/Linux clients yet, sorry!)

Pretty much all my news I read now is through RSS; I still occasionally browse through Google News on my browser, though. Also, nearly every blog, with the exception of Xanga blogs, I can get syndicated to me. What does that mean? It means I don't have to go through my bookmarks every day to see who updated their site: I'm told when a site is updated. That means I don't have to check Jeremy's site every day to know if he's posted his next bi-lunar log entry.

I haven't found too many non-technical introductions to RSS; the best one I've got is at the Law Library Resource Xchange: RSS for Non-Techie Librarians.

Hey, once you get started with RSS Aggregators (that's what they call these readers), you can add me first:

RSS 2.0, scribbles
RSS 2.0, scribbles: comments

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