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Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Introduction to RSS

(Note:this post is primarily intended for my students but may be useful to anyone else who is relatively new to blogs)

If you have spent any time on the web, you have probably seen this icon, which signifies an RSS feed. Subscribing to feeds means that you don't have to actually visit sites to get newly-published information; instead, the content is sent to you. For the Economics for Teachers class, in which every student will be publishing a blog, the easiest way to keep up with all the posts is through subscribing to the feeds. The following Common Craft video provides a simple explanation of how feeds work:

The RSS feed for this blog is at the top of the right-hand sidebar. As the video points out, you will need a feedreader for collecting all your feeds. Google Reader is one of the more popular web-based readers and if you already have a gmail account, this is probably the easiest way to go. Bloglines is another web-based reader that is super-easy to use. There are also readers that you can set up as stand-alone software on your own computer or that work through Outlook (NewsGator) or Thunderbird, if you want something that is more like reading your email.

For those who would prefer to subscribe via email, you can do that too - just fill in the box with a valid email address. You will get a window asking you to fill in some information to prevent spam and then an activation email will be sent to your email address (be sure to check your spam folder if you don't see it in your inbox).

UPDATE: Just found this post about RSS that I totally wish I had written - go read it for a much more interesting explanation than I've written here...

1 comment:

  1. This is great. All of the Commoncraft explanations of webware are wonderful. I've got them as Favorites on the Course Design Institute YouTube channel.


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