Aug 14 2006

Aggregators or RSS Readers

Posted by cheyennejack at 7:58 PM
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- Categories: Productivity

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As far as I'm concerned the term RSS Reader and Aggregator can be used interchangeably.  What they cannot do, is be ignored.

My old morning routine used to be something like ok lets surf to cnn.com, then nfl.com, the techcrunch.com, etc. etc. until I had gotten around to most of the sites I regularly visit.  Then I'd run across another cool site and have to remember to add it to my routine, maybe my bookmarks, maybe del.icio.us if I knew what that was at the time.  Pretty soon I'd have hours spent just going to different sites, waiting for them to load, going to the particular articles I found interesting and reading them.

Enter RSS (Really Simple Syndication).  Now, I go to my aggregator (www.netvibes.com), actually its my homepage, and "voila!" All the news and sites that I find of interest have their headlines automagically pulled into my RSS reader.  I glance through the sites see what headlines are of interest, click them read them, close them.  My reader even remembers for me which articles I've viewed.
 

You don't have to be technically savvy or even really understand how it all works.  Just take a few minutes to set up a reader and save yourself countless hours.  I suggest Netvibes, but there are many others out there including offerings by Google, Microsoft and Yahoo.  I suggest netvibes personally, because I'm in technology and don't want my content to necessarily be influenced by one of the big 3.  Also, it just rocks, is really easy to use and is constantly being improved.  Finally, if you use the Flock browser which I have written about in previous blogs, it has an RSS Reader pre-installed with it.

To add an RSS feed to your reader, follow these steps on your favorite sites.

1) Find the little orange box on a page that says "RSS" or "XML".
2) Click it.
3) Copy the URL or web address from the browser
4) Paste it into wherever your rss reader says "add content or rss feed".

So no delaying set up your account, and even add my rss feed to it, so you don't have to remember to check http://www.cheyennejack.com again for my latest blog entry.


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