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What is RSS?

Why RSS? The benefits of using RSS

The content of most websites changes on an unpredictable schedule. Repeatedly checking each website to see if there is any new content can be very tedious.

RSS (Really Simple Syndication) is a format for delivering regularly changing web content. Many news-related sites, weblogs and other online publishers syndicate their content as an RSS Feed to whoever wants it.

Email notification of changes is one solution to this problem. Unfortunately, when you receive email notifications from multiple websites, they are usually disorganized and can get overwhelming. Your email program can also mistake those emails for spam.

With RSS, notifications of changes to multiple websites are handled easily, and the results are presented to you in a well-organized format that is distinct from email.

What do I need to do to read an RSS Feed?


A screen shot of how EBC feeds appear in Google Reader
(Click to enlarge)

“Feed reader” or “news aggregator” programs allow you to grab the RSS feeds from various sites and display them for you to read and use. However, one of the easiest ways to get started with RSS is with a free web-based news reader. My Yahoo, Bloglines, and Google Reader are popular web-based feed readers.

There are also a number of applications that download and read news feeds on your computer. Some popular feed readers include Amphetadesk (Windows, Linux, Mac), FeedReader (Windows), and NewsGator (Windows - integrates with Outlook).

How do I pick up the EBC RSS feed?

Once you have chosen your Feed Reader, click on the RSS icon:

You can also find other sites that syndicate their content, and add their RSS feed to the list of feeds your Feed Reader checks. Many sites display this icon to let you know that a feed is available.

last edited: Jun 02, 2009

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