What are feeds? I see “RSS”, “XML”, and “Atom” out there, but I don’t know how I might use these links when I find them.
Feeds are a way for websites large and small to distribute their content well beyond just visitors using browsers. Feeds permit subscription to regular updates, delivered automatically via a web portal, news reader, or in some cases good old email. Feeds also make it possible for site content to be packaged into “widgets,” “gadgets,” mobile devices, and other bite-sized technologies that make it possible to display blogs, podcasts, and major news/sports/weather/whatever headlines just about anywhere.
What Does This Mean?
You may recognize the universal feed icon or these “chicklets” from your favorite websites, blogs, and podcasts. These icons represent content in any format – text, audio or video – to which you can subscribe and read/watch/listen using a feed reader. What’s that?
Why is This a Good Thing?
Technology evolution in online publishing has made it really easy to not only publish regular updates to web-based content, but also keep track of a large number of your favorite websites or blogs, without having to remember to check each site manually or clutter your email inbox. You can now streamline your online experience by subscribing to specific content feeds and aggregating this information in one place to be read when you’re ready.