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What is RSS? And how to use it


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Categories : Web

Lots of people ask the question “What is RSS?” RSS is short for Real Simple Syndication. If you use the web on a regular basis, it is a fast, convenient way to keep up with new information as it is posted on the web. When you use RSS, you’re basically subscribing to another website in a way that enables you to see if the site has any new content that interests you. For example, you can see the latest headlines on a news site without actually visiting the site. If you see a headline that interests you, all you have to do is select it and you’re taken to the site where you can read the entire story.

Does RSS just deliver news?

You may wonder “What is RSS capable of other than delivering news?” While news websites typically offer you the option to subscribe to their RSS feed, many other kinds of sites make it available as well. Employment sites that post job listings often provide an RSS feed that allows job seekers to quickly scan any new jobs that are available. Bloggers also will provide the feeds so readers can see when a new blog has been posted. As you can see, any site where the content has continuous, often time-sensitive updates is a site that should be, and probably is, offering visitors a feed.

Another common question: “What is RSS going to look like when I subscribe to a feed?” Subscribing to an RSS feed is easy. Websites that offer it will almost always have a familiar icon that a visitor can click in order to subscribe to the feed. The feed “connects” to the web browser you use on your computer and the name of the feed will appear in a bar at the top of your web browser. It works essentially the same as a bookmark to a site. When you click on it, however, a pull down menu will appear that will give a summarized listing of current and new information you can read on the site. You can select a posting that interests to you and go straight to it. If there are no new postings, you can move on to your next web task without having to actually visit that site.

What is RSS going to do for me?

Finally, you might be thinking, “What is RSS going to do for me?” If you spend a lot time on the web, RSS is a great way to conserve time and visit more of your favorite sites faster. And it’s a great service for websites that provides visitors constantly updated content. So if you want to keep up with the latest happenings on the web, subscribing to RSS feeds is the perfect solution.

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