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RSS and its use in Libraries

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A presentation by Mr. Sukhdev Singh, NIC New Delhi, during National Workshop on Library 2.0: A Global Information Hub, Feb 5-6, 2009 at PRL Ahmedabad

A presentation by Mr. Sukhdev Singh, NIC New Delhi, during National Workshop on Library 2.0: A Global Information Hub, Feb 5-6, 2009 at PRL Ahmedabad

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    • 1. RSS and its use in Libraries Sukhdev Singh
    • 2. First of all let us see what RSS can do?
    • 3. Even before that let us see how we can keep ourselves up-to-date in the Era of Internet
    • 4.
      • Blogs
      News Journals Databases Keeping yourself Up-to-date Go Get It
    • 5.
      • Blogs
      News Journals Databases Keeping yourself Up-to-date Guests are Welcomed
    • 6. RSS is the new way of keeping yourself up-to-date
      • RSS (which, in its most recent format, stands for "Really Simple Syndication")
      • Some expand it as - Rich Site Summary
    • 7. By RSS Feeds
      • Easily stay informed by subscribing the latest content from the sites you are interested in.
      • You save time by not visiting each site individually.
      • Your privacy is maintained unlike subscribing to each site's email newsletter
    • 8. What all is Required for this?
      • A PLACE to mix the new content of your interest
          • RSS READER
      • and Content in Special Format
          • RSS Feeds
    • 9. RSS READERs
      • Desktop Softwares
        • http://www.download.com/RSS-Tools/3150-9227-0.html
      • Online Services
          • http://reader.google.com
          • http://my.yahoo.com
          • http://bloglines.com
    • 10.  
    • 11.  
    • 12. http://www.bloglines.com/
    • 13. Even smart cell phones have means to read RSS
    • 14.  
    • 15. Where to get RSS Feeds
      • Blogs – Most are RSS Enabled
      • Web sites - Check for buttons
      • Databases –
          • Execute your search query
          • Create RSS Feed
    • 16. Connecting READER with FEEDS
      • Clicking on RSS Button will reveal the URL of the RSS Feed
      • Copy the URL
      • Paste the URL in your READER and subscribe the FEED
    • 17. OK, we will take an example
    • 18. Say for Example
      • I am interested in News – Let me know what current News are reported by NDTV.COM
      • I read blogs, so let me know what is latest on Peter Suber’s Blog.
      • I want to know what all new articles are deposited in my favorite repository - http://openmed.nic.in
      • What all new articles are added in my favorite database - PubMed - on the topic “Medical Informatics in India”?
    • 19. Ok, we will use Google Reader as our RSS Reader for this example http://www.google.com/reader/
    • 20. Login
    • 21.
      • Look for Add Subscription
    • 22. Click on Add Subscription
    • 23. We will now subscribe to RSS feeds One by One
      • Let us first add Feed from News Site i.e.
      • NDTV in our example
    • 24. Open a New Window in your browser go to the site i.e. NDTV.COM
    • 25. Click on RSS button and Get URL of your RSS Feed for News
    • 26. Just Look URL. COPY it with Ctrl + C
    • 27. Paste the URL Here Ctrl+V
    • 28.
      • Wow, Your News are Here
    • 29. Now let us subscribe a blog! Remember M ost blogs are RSS enabled So no need to look for any Orange Button. Just enter the blog URL
    • 30. Now let us add a feed from Blog now.
    • 31. Repeat steps for Adding Subscription
    • 32.
      • Wow, Blog feed is here
    • 33. To subscribe RSS Feed from any site Look for Orange Buttons Click and get the URL
    • 34.
      • Now for Repository.
      • Look for RSS Button .
    • 35. Look for URL Above and Copy it.
    • 36. Add Subscription
    • 37. And it has been done!
    • 38. You can also create / customize an RSS feed to suit interest. However the site should provide such facility Let us see how we can create an RSS Feed on PubMed Database Site on a Query
    • 39. Now let us create a feed from PubMED
    • 40. Enter your Query as you do normally.
    • 41.
      • In Display Menu - Click on Drop Down Option for RSS
    • 42. Click on Create Feed
    • 43. Look for Small Orange Icon – and Click it.
    • 44. Copy the URL of the Feed.
    • 45. Add Subscription
    • 46. And no surprise, It is Done
    • 47. You can Manage yours RSS Subscriptions
    • 48.  
    • 49. See them all at one place. No need to visit each site.
    • 50.  
    • 51. You can even Export or Import your subscriptions to / from Other Readers
    • 52. We have seen the usefulness of RSS. Now let see what is this RSS?
    • 53. Blogs Saved Searchers Social Bookmarking Wikis News Syndication Isn’t that R eally S imple?
    • 54. RSS
      • Stands for “Really Simple Syndication”.
      • Can also stand for “Rich Site Summary”, or “RDF Site Summary”.
    • 55.
      • “ Really Simple Syndication ” is the default expansion of RSS nowadays.
    • 56. RSS is written in XML language for syndicating information items on web.
    • 57. XML Source Code of RSS <?xml version=&quot;1.0&quot; encoding=&quot;windows-1252&quot;?> <rss version=&quot;2.0&quot;> <channel> <title>NDTV News</title> <description></description> <language>en-us</language> <link>http://www.ndtv.com</link> <copyright>&#169; Copyright 2006, New Delhi Television Ltd.</copyright> <pubDate>Wed, 21 Jan 2009 16:13:17 GMT</pubDate> <category>National News</category> <image> <title>NDTVNews</title><url>http://www.ndtv.com/images/ndtv.gif</url> <link>http://www.ndtv.com</link> </image> <item> <title>Surya Kiran trainer jet crashes in Karnataka, pilot killed</title> <pubDate>Wed, 21 Jan 2009 13:29:00 GMT</pubDate> <description><![CDATA[<p><a href=http://www.ndtv.com/convergence/ndtv/story.aspx?id=NEWEN20090080888><img align=&quot;left&quot; border=&quot;0&quot; src=&quot;http://www.ndtv.com/convergence/images/thumbnail/ver1/m/mapkarnataka1.jpg&quot; alt=&quot;Surya Kiran trainer jet crashes in Karnataka, pilot killed&quot; style=&quot;margin-right:5px;margin-top:5px;width:70px;height:70px;&quot; /></a>A pilot of an Indian Kiran trainer jet was killed in a crash on Wednesday morning near Bidar in Karnataka. </p><br clear=&quot;all&quot; />]]></description> <link>http://www.ndtv.com/convergence/ndtv/story.aspx?id=NEWEN20090080888</link> <keywords>crash, pilot, Karnataka</keywords> </item> </channel> </rss>
    • 58. RSS when viewed in Browser
    • 59. RSS Format
      • RSS feed is an XML file containing a list of  items  or  entries .
      • items are identified by links and can have some metadata associated with it.
      • The most basic metadata for an item includes a title for the link and a description of it.
    • 60. For example, a simple entry of an ‘item’ might look like
      • <item> <title>Title of an item in feed</title> <link>http://link.domain.com/item</link> <description> This is the description of the item. </description> </item>
    • 61. Some Important Tags
      • rss – it is used to mark the global container.
      • channel – is used to mark the distributing channel. It has several descriptive tags and holds one or several items. 
    • 62. Container
      • <?xml version=&quot;1.0&quot; ?>
      • < rss  version=&quot;2.0&quot;> < channel >      ……
      • …… </ channel >
      • </ rss >
    • 63. Required tags for the channel  
      • title - The title of the channel. Should contain the name. link -   URL of the website that provides this channel. d escription - Summary of what the provider is. i tem.   At least one item tag for the content of the feed.
    • 64.
      • < rss  version=&quot;2.0&quot;> < channel >      < title > Channel Title </ title >          < link > http://www.xul.fr/ </ link >      < description > Some Description </ description >        < item > 
      • … ..
      • … ..     </ item >      </ channel >
      • </ rss >
    • 65. Each  item  tag must hold these tags:
      • title . Title of the article. link . The URL of the page. description . Summary of the article.    
    • 66.
      • < item >  
      • < title > Surya Kiran trainer jet crashes in Karnataka, pilot killed
      • </ title >            < link > http://www.ndtv.com/convergence/ndtv/story.aspx?id=NEWEN20090080888
      • </ link >     < description > A pilot of an Indian Kiran trainer jet was killed in a crash on Wednesday morning near Bidar in Karnataka
      • </ description > 
      • </ item >
      • <item>
      • …… .
      • </item>
    • 67. Format looks too complicated? Don’t worry
      • In practice you will perhaps never need to create an RSS Feed manually.
      • For all practical purposes you will be using RSS Enabled content managers or some other tools to exact data from pages and generate Feeds.
    • 68. How does RSS work? Content Provider Content Consumer
    • 69. How RSS Feeds are created?
      • Manual Markup You markup the content manually.
      • Software Assisted You just type in the content in forms .
      • The software generates the markup.
      • Publishing Platforms
      • You simply use RSS enabled publishing platform / content manager.
    • 70. Software Assisted
      • Manual mark-up is not required.
      • Number of software options are available to assist in creating RSS Feeds.
    • 71. One such software is
      • Download from http://usablelabs.org/feedspring
      • http://www.softpedia.com/progDownload/Feed-Spring-Download-20514.html
    • 72.
      • Just fill in few forms and it will generate XML file i.e. RSS Feed
    • 73.  
    • 74. http://www.feedforall.com/download.htm
    • 75.  
    • 76.  
    • 77.  
    • 78.  
    • 79.  
    • 80.  
    • 81.  
    • 82.  
    • 83. http://www.webreference.com/cgi-bin/perl/makerss.pl
    • 84. RSS enabled Publishing platforms Content managers Database based applications Modern Library Automation Softwares
    • 85. Modern publishing and content management platforms are RSS enabled
      • Blogging platforms like – Blogger, Wordpress, Livejournal, Movable Type
      • Some popular open source, server-side, portal content management systems such as PostNuke , (php), PHP-Nuke ,(php) phpWebLog (php), SlashDot (Perl), Squishdot (Zope), Rusty Foster's Scoop (Perl), Roller (Java), and Drupal (php) can also create and display RSS feeds using their built-in news aggregators.
    • 86. WEB 2.0 Applications are RSS enabled
    • 87. http://edutechwiki.unige.ch/en/List_of_web_2.0_applications
    • 88. http://oedb.org/blogs/ilibrarian/2008/the-100-top-web-apps-for-2008/
    • 89. Database Driven Applications
      • Database driven applications can easily be made RSS enabled by creating reports (displaying items) in XML format for RSS Feeds
    • 90.  
    • 91.  
    • 92. PERL Script used in OpenMED (EPRINTS) TO Generate RSS Feed
    • 93.  
    • 94.  
    • 95.  
    • 96.  
    • 97. Libraries and RSS
      • Libraries are ideal candidates for adopting and using RSS to their advantage as
        • Information Producers
        • Information Gateways
        • Information Consumers
    • 98. Libraries as Information Producers
      • As information producers, libraries maintain their web sites providing information about its services, new additions, announcements and other many other information tools like OPAC
    • 99. Libraries Can -
      • Create an RSS feed for new additions to the online catalogue
      • Create an RSS feed tied to a library card account for hold notifications and/or overdue materials.
      • Create an RSS feed for new programs and events posted on the library website.
      • Create an RSS feed for the library’s electronic newsletter.
      • Create an RSS feed for press releases and other media advisories.
      • Create an RSS feed for library closings, including emergency closings.
      • Create an RSS feed for library job openings
    • 100.  
    • 101.  
    • 102.  
    • 103.  
    • 104.  
    • 105.  
    • 106.  
    • 107. As a gateway to information, libraries can:
      • Subscribe to a few RSS feeds, such as local news websites, and share the content on the library’s website.
      • Subscribe and share RSS feeds of interest to library users.
      • Compile list of useful RSS feeds with suitable annotation to help users to pick up feeds of their interest.
    • 108.  
    • 109.  
    • 110.  
    • 111. Libraries can Re-Publish RSS Feeds
      • Create RSS Feeds from databases like PubMed on “queries” that might be of interest to various departments of parent institute of the library
      • Subscribe to RSS feeds of interest to library users and re-publish them
    • 112.  
      • Content of RSS feeds can be displayed from websites by running suitable scripts at web servers.
      • When someone visits such websites these scripts get activated.
      • Scripts extract RSS Feeds from providers’ websites and display items with appropriate links to providers’ pages.
    • 113.
      • Let us take a simple example of Re-publishing RSS Feeds for special interest groups
      • Say there is a university department for “Medical Informatics”.
      • Faculty and Students would like to be alerted on what all is being published on “Medical Informatics”.
    • 114. Generate an RSS Feed by suitable query
    • 115.
      • For our example we will select a site that allows to publish RSS Feeds for free.
      • http://suprglu.com
      • (There are many such services)
    • 116.  
    • 117.  
    • 118.  
    • 119.  
    • 120.  
    • 121.  
    • 122. Libraries as consumer can subscribe to Feeds of Interest to Librarians
    • 123. http://www.libsuccess.org/index.php?title=RSS
    • 124. Conclusion
      • RSS is a new way of delivering and consuming information
      • Librarians and Libraries should exploit this technology to effectively promote the content they produce
      • Help their users to select appropriate feeds
      • Re-Publish selective RSS Feeds to cater special target groups
      • Use this technology to keep themselves up-to-date in this era of Information Explosion
    • 125. Further Reading:
      • RSS - A Primer for Publishers & Content Providers (M.Moffat) - convincing rationale for RSS and valuable Q&A - http://www.eevl.ac.uk/rss_primer/
      • Searching RSS Channels for News (Utah State Library) - http://www.rssgov.com/rsssearchworkshop.html
      • RSS Tutorial for Content Publishers and Webmasters (M. Nottingham) - http://www.mnot.net/rss/tutorial/
      • Set Up a Simple Syndication Feed Using RSS (L. Angelius) - http://www.devx.com/xml/Article/10790
      • RSS FAQ (Ed Pimentel) - http://radio.weblogs.com/0105060/categories/blogging/2003/08/26.html#a1637
      • RSS 0.92: A Step-by-Step Beginner's Guide to Creating Your First Document(M. Trump) - http://www.jamsterdam.com/rss092/
    • 126.
      • PHP and XML: Parsing RSS 1.0 (K. Yank) - http://www.sitepoint.com/article/560/2
      • Explanation of RSS, How You Can Use it, and Finding RSS Feeds (M.Fagan) - http://www.faganfinder.com/search/rss.shtml
      • What is RSS and how can it serve libraries? http://eprints.rclis.org/2531/1/RSS_and_libraries_EN3.pdf
      • Library 2.0: RSS Feeds Dynamic Uses for Special Libraries http://www.sla.org/pdfs/sla2007/hartrssfeeds.pdf
      • 10 Ways Libraries Can Use RSS - The Moxie Librarian http://moxielibrarian.wordpress.com/2008/02/27/10-ways-libraries-can-use-rss/
    • 127. THANKS Slides can be downloaded from: http://blog.sukhdevsingh.com/2009/02/rss-and-libraries.html or http://www.slideshare.net/sukhi/rss-and-its-use-in-libraries

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