What the heck is an RSS reader?

Ruth mentioned that she didn't quite understand what an RSS reader is (actually, she said she doesn't understand "like, ANY of the stuff you post."

No problem. I live to educate. :)

On the right-hand side of my site you'll see four links under the heading "Syndication". Two of them will add this site to Google, or My Yahoo so you can keep up with my shenanigans there. There's also two others called "Comments Feed" and "XML". The XML link contains the postings from this site in RSS (Really Simple Syndication) format that is easy for a program called a news aggregator to read and use. News aggregators are very useful for keeping track of multiple sites without having to visit each one of them to see if there's new content. For instance,Ruth's site isn't updated on a daily basis, so it's handy for me to have my news aggregator poll Ruth's site on occasion to find the one moment when she does update her site. Then I can read the posting in my news aggregator whenever I fire it up. ReBlog is a web-based news aggregator, which will take all of these RSS feeds (like the ones on your sites) and display the latest postings as they occur. There's hundreds of news aggregators out there. (There's even a news aggregator in later versions of Safari and Firefox. There's also another one called Sage which is useful for those who use Firefox. I'd higly recommend getting Sage and using it, as it's got a lot of good features.)

I hope this is a good introduction to news aggregators and their benefits.

And, just as an aside, if there's anything you'd like to know more about that's on my site, feel free to comment, and I'll do my best to elaborate. There's no sense watching me blather on without stopping me to ask what I'm blathering about. :)


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