What is RSS and How Can it Make Your Internet Life Easier?

Most of us love to surf the Internet and visit all the sites we like to follow. It’s fun to see what’s new at our favorite sites! However, visiting all these Internet sites can be very time-consuming. For example, if you have 10 sites you like to visit each day, then you’ll have to surf to each one and look around to see if any new content has been added that catches your fancy RSS syndication. The process of surfing and perusing these 10 sites can take up a big chunk of your time, and it can be frustrating too.

RSS to the rescue

    • RSS stands for Rich Site Summary, or Really Simple Syndication. It’s a way for websites to publish their content or posts in an RSS Feed that can be read by another site or other software called a Reader. This means you can stay up-to-date with the content changes of the many blogs and websites you monitor by looking in just one place instead of actually visiting each one individually. You can quickly review and read all the new content from all of the sites you enjoy by following their RSS Feeds in a Reader. This saves you time and effort.

 

    • A site will most likely make available to its visitors an RSS Feed. An RSS Feed is in the form of a link. You Subscribe to these sites using the RSS Feed so you can receive updates of their content, meaning new posts, in your chosen RSS Reader.

 

  • Using RSS Feeds to aggregate all of the most recent news or posts, from all of your favorite and regularly visited sites in one convenient Reader can make your Internet surfing life a lot more enjoyable. With RSS, it will be easy for you to see what’s up and new at all of the sites you like to follow, and you can do this in just one place.

RSS Icons

    • You will often see an RSS icon on the pages of the site you want to Subscribe to. These RSS icons provide the link you need to Subscribe to the RSS Feed. Sometimes the RSS icons will have a text link too. You will usually find the RSS icon for a blog located somewhere near the upper right-hand corner at the top of the blog, but these RSS icons can be placed anywhere on the blog. The RSS icons will vary in color and size, typically they have an orange color.

 

    • If you click on this RSS icon, then one of two things will occur. You will either see a web page displayed with a dialog that allows you to Subscribe to the RSS Feed in a Reader, or you will see a web page with a lot of code shown. If you see a web page with code, then you should copy that page’s URL (the URL will be displayed in the browser Address Bar) and then add that URL to your Reader.

 

  • You will need an RSS Reader to take advantage of RSS Feeds. One very popular RSS Feed Reader is the free and online Google Reader.

Google Reader

Google Reader is my favorite RSS Reader, I currently follow over 120 blogs using Google Reader. I like to follow the RSS Feeds of blogs with subjects such as; blogs and blogging, website design, running a small business, small business marketing, Civil War history, and some blogs about writing.

Using RSS makes life easier for me!

Having a place where I can check on all of these blogs and see what has been newly posted is a great time and work saver. I’ll check on my Google Reader account two or three times a day to see what’s up with the blogs I follow. I like Google Reader a lot, and recommend it as your RSS Reader.

So, if subscribing to RSS Feeds is something new to you, and you like to keep track of multiple blogs or sites on a regular basis, then give RSS and Google Reader a try. I think you’ll appreciate the time you’ll save, and the convenience RSS provides.

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