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Reading RSS Feeds With An RSS Aggregator

RSS or Really Simple Syndication or Rich Site Summary is the latest information management tool that is gradually earning popularity among web users and web site owners. With RSS technology, it is possible to get the latest postings from your favorite web sites. But clicking on the RSS or XML button in a homepage is not enough to give you the service you need. An RSS feed or code displayed in the pop-up screen if not on the main page is composed of symbols and words that would only make sense to advanced RSS users and computer programmers and software enthusiasts. Another software tool called an RSS aggregator or reader is needed.

An aggregator works by scanning the worldwide web with latest postings based on the RSS code (containing the web site's URL) provided or added by the user. When it finds a new posting, news, or update, it will publish the RSS feed on your home page containing the title of the posting, which also serves as a clickable link to the web site source. This RSS feed may or may not contain the whole article, a summary, and photos, depending on what RSS aggregator you are using.

Aggregators come in two types: the downloadable program or desktop-type and the online or web-based type. The desktop aggregator usually charges a certain amount for its services; this would include regular updating in the form of upgrades or patches to the original version. This type of RSS reader allows more customization of RSS feeds as well as page format or design over its on-line counterparts. But of course, price can be a drawback.

On-line or web-based aggregators are free of charge. All you need to do is register an account with them then you can start enjoying their services. Depending on the "brand" of the aggregator, customization is more limited. Some even do not allow you to customize at all.

Product and service advertisers are realizing the potential of RSS aggregators in internet marketing. In fact, several submit RSS codes to several popular web-based aggregators to reach the growing technophile and internet-based market. My Yahoo has been instrumental in popularizing RSS technology to both users and web site owners and advertisers.

At present, there are many aggregators to choose from and newer versions of the same aggregator are constantly developed by its programmers.

Below are some of these desktop and online aggregators: Desktop Aggregators 1.AmphetaDesk Advantages: -free -supports Linux, Mac, and Windows -easy addition of RSS feeds

Disadvantages: -not maximized use of screen display -few options for customizing

2.FeedDemon Advantages: -user friendly -free trial version -contains prepared popular feeds -allows filtering of RSS feeds -configurable "watch list" to manage junk RSS feeds -search channel feature that incorporates other RSS services e.g. Feedster -allows feed storage for future use -tabbed browsers for channel navigation -built-in podcast receiver

Disadvantages: -supports only Internet Explorer (embedded) -paid software (`$29.95)

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Online Aggregators 1.Bloglines Advantages: -all major browsers supported (e.g. Netscape Navigator, Internet Explorer, Firefox) -user-friendly especially for beginners -free, web-based aggregator -easy registration -no advertisements -contains its own directory of RSS feeds of thousands of web sites -personal email account for subscribing to newsletter emails (optional) -allows privacy adjustments for personal blogs -allows saved searches -mobile version available -10 languages supported -Additional add-on tools for automated blogrolls and subscription buttons

2.NewsGator Advantages: -free (consumer-standard version) -provides personalized news channel -allows translation of RSS articles into email format -synchronization of feeds in several devices possible -browse and search feed capabilities save time on surfing -allows keyword filtering -blog headlines -button-click automatic subscription to news feeds

Disadvantage: -Outlook-based thus limited to Windows

3.My Yahoo Advantages: -Free web-based aggregator -user-friendly -customizable home page design -button-click subscription to RSS feeds -built-in directory and search tool for feeds -wide variety of feeds e.g. news (science, technology, local), weather -connects to all Yahoo features and services

Disadvantage -banner advertisements

There are also lightweight RSS aggregator extensions which are actually plug-ins to existing internet browsers. An example of which is Sage aggregator.

Advantages: -free of charge -beginner-friendly -reeds both RSS and Atom feeds -allows feed discovery -can be assimilated to Firefox bookmark (storage and live) -allows OPML feed lists imports and exports -customizable style sheets -supports a wide range of locales e.g. Catalan, Italian, Japanese, Spanish, Korean, Polish, Slovenian, etc. -easy installation

Disadvantages: -good for about 12 RSS feeds -limited use to Mozilla-Firefox and Mozilla-Firefox supported browsers

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RSS developers promise better features in future versions of their aggregators. Microsoft is planning to include a built-in aggregator in their next Windows version. These developments are definitely something to look forward to by all internet aficionados.

Related: Web Content Strategy

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Jeremiah Patton is a current user of rss. Jeremiah Patton uses rss for his legitimate work from home business opportunities web site at http://www.2ndincome4u.com to keep visitors updated on current events and news.

Boost your Search Engine Rankings with RSS Feeds

I'm here to teach you about how RSS Feeds can boost traffic for your web site. You may have heard of it, but I guarantee you are not harnessing the full power of the tool. RSS Feeds are very hot, and the marketing pro's are getting their web sites listed in Google within 2 to 3 days.

What is an RSS Feed?

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RSS stands for "Really Simple Syndication." Think of RSS this way: Whenever a writer who belongs to a syndicate writes a column, they don't just write it for their local paper, every article goes up on the newswire and any paper who belongs to the syndicate can reprint it.

First, you have to download an RSS Reader, a program that combines all the news online in one place. You can download a reader for free at www.RssReader.com. Once you've downloaded a reader, you can click any topic that suits your need, and only those topics will be delivered right to you.. Why would I put RSS on my web site?

An RSS feed can be thought of like this. Let's take five news sources (Yahoo, MSN, CNN, ESPN, FOX). An RSS reader would scan all five news sources and take each headline and create a summary of the article. Now, you can actually sort the news stories and have only the ones you are interested in delivered right to your web site from all five news sources. Search Engines are crawling web sites and looking for fresh content. If you have an RSS Feed, you are getting up to the minute news stories. These constantly change whenever a new story comes out. The Search Engines will give you a higher Page Rank because it thinks your page is updated on a regular basis.

How do I add one to my web site?

I tried an RSS Feed for the first time, and it took less than five minutes. Here's what it looks like:

Bush Celebrates Shuttle's Launch (AP) NASA sends shuttle back into space after long pause (Reuters) Shuttle Discovery Blasts Into Orbit (AP) NASA's aging workhorse returns to space (AFP) NASA Returns to Flight as Discovery Reaches Orbit (SPACE.com / LiveScience.com)

As you can see, this is my very first RSS Feed. All the news stories within the last hour regarding the shuttle launch are now listed for me and my visitors to read. Guess what? It took less than 5 minutes, and I instantly have an RSS Feed. Why do I need one?

Search Engines are crawling your site and if you are not providing quality, up to the minute content then you are getting placed further down the rankings. Your competition who has this information is getting FREE advertising from the Search Engines who are placing their page 1st or 2nd when users search for a particular keyword.

How do I put an RSS Feed on my site?

You can now place an RSS Feed on your web site in THREE easy steps.

* Step 1: Search for topics that you are currently interested in (use Yahoo).

When you see an orange RSS or XML box like the one above, you know that article is compatible with a feed. Copy the URL of the webpage.

* Step 2: Go to http://www.feeddigest.com and paste the URL in the digest for them to create a two line code for your webpage. You can also copy and paste the long page of code if you understand programming.

* Step 3: In Frontpage, Go to Insert - a web component - html markup and paste the two or three line script that RSS Digest gave you. Check it out! Your first RSS Feed! Try it yourself right now, create your first RSS feed in under five minutes, FREE! The only way you can truly learn about them is for you to JUMP in FEET FIRST!

Kit Elliott is the author of The Traffic Toolchest. His ethical approach to marketing makes him one of the top experts in his field. Check out The Traffic Toolchest at http://www.thetraffictoolchest.com to get over 70 valuable marketing tools for free.

Hey, please visit the Internet Marketing web sites:

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