About PCC's RSS Feeds
What is RSS?
RSS stands for Really Simple Syndication. It’s a way to subscribe to web content, as you might a newsletter or newspaper, without visiting the websites until you want to read the entire article. To read the entire article you just click on the headline like any normal link on a Web site. RSS makes it possible for people to keep up with their favorite web sites in an automated manner that's easier than checking them manually.
An RSS document, which is called a "feed", "web feed", or "channel", contains either a summary of content from an associated web site or the full text.
What is a Feed or News Reader?
RSS content can be read using software called a "feed reader" or an "aggregator." The user subscribes to a feed by entering the feed's link into the reader or by clicking a RSS icon in a browser that initiates the subscription process. The reader checks the user's subscribed feeds regularly for new content, downloading any updates that it finds. Once you’ve chosen a feed reader, and subscribed to some feeds, you can browse a list of the latest stories and select the ones you like. Items in a feed are always displayed with the most recent ones listed first. The content is sometimes described as being "pulled" to the subscriber.
There are many ways to read RSS feeds. There are dedicated programs called News Readers that are designed to do this. Many of them are free.
What Feed Reader Should I Use?
Here's a list some of the most popular tools:
On the web, news aggregator sites:
If you don't want to have to install a program, many people choose My Yahoo! Home Page, Google Personalized Homepage, My MSN, or My AOL to read feeds right within the start page for that service. Other providers of web-based feed readers include Google Reader, Newsgator, Rojo. Bloglines, Attensa Online, or NewsGator Online. All of the web-based services are free.
On your computer:
If you want a separate program to read feeds, you can use FeedDemon or NewsGator for Microsoft Outlook or Attensa for Outlook if you're on Microsoft Windows. Both tools let you switch between these programs and the web-based reader at any time. If you're on a Macintosh running OS X, the most popular feed reader is NetNewsWire, which can also connect to the web-based services.
In your browser:
Many web browsers have support for reading feeds built-in or as add ons.
Built into the browser
Internet Explorer 7 (Windows)
Plugins for the browser:
Feedview, a Firefox extension (cross-platform)
Subscribing to Feeds
Once you've got a tool to read feeds, you'll want to find some feeds worth reading. Of course you'll want to subscribe to some of the feeds at PCC that will keep you up to date on the PCC news and events. Many of the tools listed above provide some built-in feeds to get you started. Then, as you visit other sites on the web, you can keep your eyes open for links that say XML or RSS or Syndication, or for that orange button up above, and add the feeds you find interesting.
Podcasts - RSS that delivers audio or video
Podcasts are media file subscriptions, such as audio or video formats, that are deliverable with RSS feeds or iTunes. For more information, visit our help page on podcasting.
Revised March 8, 2012 by firstname.lastname@example.org