RSS (Really Simple Syndication)

What is RSS?
What do I need to use an RSS feed?
Where can I get a news reader?

What is RSS?

The Internet contains billions of pages of information. Finding the information you are looking for can be time consuming and frustrating.

Rather than clicking from site to site, RSS can deliver information directly to you.

The use of RSS allows you to see when web sites from all areas of the Internet have added new content. You can receive the latest information in one place without having to visit each site every day.

RSS is designed to be read by computers not people. An RSS reader is then used to pull all of your information together.

The number of web sites providing RSS is increasing rapidly! For example, The Times, CNN, BBC News ...

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What do I need to use an RSS feed?

In general, the first thing you need is something called a news reader. This is a piece of software that checks RSS feeds and lets you read any new articles that have been added to them. There are many different versions, some of which are accessed using a browser, and some of which are downloadable applications. Browser-based news readers let you catch up with your RSS feed subscriptions from any computer, whereas downloadable applications let you store them on your main computer, in the same way that you either download your e-mail using Outlook, or keep it on a web-based service like Hotmail.

Once you have chosen a news reader, all you have to do is to decide what content you want to receive in your news reader, by finding and subscribing to the relevant RSS feeds.

If you click on the button you can subscribe to the feed in various ways, including by dragging the URL of the RSS feed into your news reader or by cutting and pasting the same URL into a new feed in your news reader. Most sites that offer RSS feeds use a similar orange RSS button, but some may just have a normal web link to the feed.

Some browsers, including Firefox, Opera and Safari, automatically check for RSS feeds for you when you visit a web site, and display an icon when they find one. This can make subscribing to RSS feeds much easier. For more details on these, please check their web sites.

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Where can I get a news reader application?

There are a large number of news readers available based on your operating system.

Windows Mac OS X Web
Newz Crawler
FeedDemon
Awasu
Newsfire
NetNewsWire
Bloglines
My Yahoo!
NewsGator

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