RSS stands for “Really Simple Syndication.” It is an increasingly popular tool for content distribution that can help you to manage information on the Internet.
Based on the XML (or eXtensible Markup Language) programming language, RSS allows you to subscribe to a news feed – such as LCRA’s Bob Rose Weather Blog – to get headlines and summaries automatically delivered to you.
The beauty of RSS is: You don’t need to keep coming back to a Web site to see whether there is a new posting. Subscribe to a specific news feed and you will automatically receive short summaries describing recently added or updated items and links to read the full story.
Here are the steps to use RSS.
- First you need a news reader that displays RSS feeds. This will allow you to view headlines from Web sites you select. There are a number of ways to access RSS feeds:
- Install a news reader that displays RSS feeds. (For a list of news readers — also called aggregators — go to a Web site such as News on Feeds.)
- An alternative to downloading a news reader is to use a Web-based news reader. For example, MyYahoo! and My AOL users can add RSS feeds directly to a personal page.
- Next, you need to add the RSS’ page address (or URL) to your news reader so it captures those headlines and displays them on a Web page. To find the RSS' URL, right-click on the orange RSS or XML button — it will look like this — to “Copy Shortcut.” Or click on the “RSS” button and select "Copy" from the Edit menu to copy the URL. Next, “Paste” the URL into your news reader or Web page, such as MyYahoo!
- Congratulations. You’ve just added a RSS feed. Whenever the “feed” you subscribe to is updated the headline will appear on your news reader page or, depending how your reader works, in an e-mail you receive with the latest posting.
For more information about RSS feeds and how to use them, see this story on CNET.com: Make your own headlines: These easy tools can deliver the best news to your desktop without the fluff — no matter how you define fluff.
— Published Nov. 3, 2006