As newspapers, radio and television shared or shifted content to their online versions (some major city newspapers have stopped print production completely), their audience has discovered the beauty of RSS (Really Simple Syndication) feeds to have that new content delivered right to their desktop.
Say you have favourite websites or blogs you’d like to visit on a regular basis, but just don’t have the time. Subscribe to the RSS feed from that site and you can stay on top of the latest happenings in any of your areas of interest. Here’s how:
To subscribe to an RSS feed, go to the site you want to receive the feed from, and look for the RSS feed icon (typically but not always in the footer). See the red arrow in the screenshot below? Just click on that RSS feed icon to subscribe.
Then, to read updates from the site, you’ll set up a “feed reader”, which aggregates all the updates from your subscribed RSS feed(s) and displays them for you. When you’re subscribing to a new RSS feed, it will ask you to selected your preferred RSS feed location/reader. There are literally hundreds of feed readers out there (this is the internet, after all), however here are a couple of easy options:
1) If you prefer to see your RSS feeds on your browser window vs email, and you are a Firefox user, then you can select the “Live Bookmarks” RSS feed option. The RSS feed icon for that website will be added to your browser window (below the enterable address bar), as shown below.
When you want to view your RSS feeds, simply access the appropriate RSS feed icon from your browser window and you will see a drop-down list of the recent updates to choose from.
2) On the other hand, if you want a nudge/email to let you know when there’s a new update, then you may prefer one of these Newsgator options – Outlook email, mobile devices (iPad, iPhone, Blackberry, Windows Mobile, Java Mobile Smartphone, Java PDA), or Windows/Mac desktop.
So now you know the scoop on RSS – start subscribing and let the world wide web bring the news you want, to you!