Click the linked title or paste the URL (below the title) into your favorite reader.
RSS feeds provide an easy way for users to keep up-to-date on the latest postings of a
particular website. Using aggregator software (explained below) the user can subscribe to
the "feeds" from any site providing them. When the site(s) is updated, the user receives the
update as a new "headline" in their aggregator, which they can click on to access the updated
Technically speaking, RSS is a family of web feed formats, specified in XML and used for Web
syndication. RSS is used by (among other things) news websites, weblogs
and podcasting. The abbreviation is variously used to refer to the
- Really Simple Syndication (RSS 2.0)
- Rich Site Summary (RSS 0.91, RSS 1.0)
- RDF Site Summary (RSS 0.9 and 1.0)
What is an Aggregator?
An aggregator or news aggregator is a type of software that retrieves syndicated
Web content that is supplied in the form of a web feed (RSS, Atom and other XML formats),
and that are published by weblogs, podcasts, vlogs, and mainstream mass media websites. Often
referred to as "news readers", aggregators are quickly becoming the preferred method for users
to receive updates from their favorite sites. There are many free aggregators available as well
as some commercial products with advanced features. The list below provides links to some of the
more popular aggregators.
Online aggregators are by far the most common. Many people will be familiar with MyYahoo or iGoogle. These are
user-customized homepages that allow the user to add content to their pages. RSS feeds provide this content. In
addition to Google and Yahoo, there are other online RSS readers that provide a greater amount of user control.
The online readers listed below are the most popular.
Client Software Aggregators:
Client software aggregators are RSS aggregators that incorporate RSS feeds into your email software.
Newsgator is the most common aggregator for Outlook Express (but is ad-supported so not entirely free).
Thunderbird is the Mozilla email client software (similar to Outlook Express) and it has RSS subscription
built right in. Likewise, many of the online email services have RSS subscription
built into the email program. The RSS feature usually shows up as an extra folder in the email folder list and
has some sort of 'add' button associated with it to add new RSS feeds.
In addition, most software manufacturers are including RSS technology in their new products. Windows Vista's
version of Outlook Express has RSS features built in.