This site, RSS, Bloglines and del.icio.us

THIS ARTICLE HAS BEEN SUPERCEDED Someone coming to this site on the day I wrote this would probably look at the homepage and think 'Geekfest Techie site'. Someone looking at it a little while ago might think 'Bad Art', at another time, 'Politics', or even 'General Ramblings'

The truth is that this site is all of these things, and none of these things.

There will be phases of all of the above, and indeed, I may go off in another direction entirely. This site is all about 'whatever interests me at the time'.

The RSS feed for this site, obviously, reflects this - but I have provided RSS Feeds within each category so that people can focus on just their interest. The more specific the category, the less often the feed will update.

Subscribe with Bloglines What is an RSS feed? An RSS feed is like a cutdown version of a site. You can use an 'RSS aggregator' to group together feeds from MANY sites and look at them in one place. I, for example, use bloglines - a web based aggregator. Once you have a bloglines account, you can tell it the address of the RSS feeds you want to watch, and then it will do all the donkey work for you.

You can tell it to show you changed items, or not. You can group feeds together (e.g. 'read every day', 'read if you have time' / or whatever you like!)

Bloglines also deals with ATOM feeds, there are technical differences, but they essentially do the same job as RSS.

Look for RSS/ATOM or XML on a website for a feed. If you use Firefox a little icon appears when a feed is available to you.

If you know someone who has a bloglines account; they can 'invite you' to bloglines. When they do this they can select feeds that you might like. This is a nice way to get started - if you would like to be invited to bloglines, please leave a request using the comment form (being sure that the email address is correct, this will not appear on the site).

The website del.icio.us works well with bloglines. Like bloglines, an account on del.icio.us is free. Del.icio.us is a 'social bookmarking' site. What this means is that it will hold your bookmarks for you, so they will be available when you move to a new machine.

The site doesn't look pretty, but the power is in the tag. When you add a bookmark you will be asked to provide tags, this are words which describe the link. For example, if bookmarking this page you might use 'murky', 'rss', 'bloglines', 'delicious', 'del.icio.us'.

This site has built in links to enable you to do add a bookmark to del.icio.us with one click, if you have an account.

You may be asking where the 'social' comes in. Well, you can search by tag - and discover links on a particular subject. You can also subscribe to tags, and when someone else uses that tag, the link will appear in your 'inbox'. Every page on del.icio.us has an RSS feed, and so you can see your del.icio.us inbox using bloglines!

RSS is a glue that can bind many websites together!