Integrating RSS into Your Web site

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You can read RSS but how do you create an RSS feed and how can you manipulate and republish RSS-based content. This three-hour workshop will show you many of your options.

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Integrating RSS into Your Web site

  1. 1. Integrating RSS into Your Web site Part 1: Introduction Michael Sauers, BCR Internet Librarian 2006 22 October 2006
  2. 3. Introductions <ul><li>Name </li></ul><ul><li>Library </li></ul><ul><li>Position </li></ul><ul><li>Does your library use RSS? If so, how? </li></ul><ul><li>Why are you here? </li></ul>
  3. 4. Survey Questions <ul><li>Were you aware of the IL2006 Wiki </li></ul><ul><li>Did you read it? </li></ul><ul><li>Did you edit it? </li></ul><ul><li>Did you subscribe to the wiki’s RSS feed? </li></ul>
  4. 5. What is RSS? <ul><li>Depending on who you ask it stands for either “Really Simple Syndication”, “Rich Site Summary”, or “RDF Site Summary”. </li></ul><ul><li>“Really Simple Syndication” is the de facto definition today. </li></ul><ul><li>RSS is an XML language for syndicating news items on the Internet. </li></ul>
  5. 6. The History of RSS <ul><li>RSS 1.1 (update to RSS 1.0), RSS 3.0 (a new, independent project), and “Simple Sharing Extensions” (an update to RSS 2.0 by Microsoft) have all been proposed but have had no impact yet. </li></ul>
  6. 7. How does RSS work? <ul><li>The information provider creates an RSS file. </li></ul><ul><li>Users subscribe to the file via an aggregator. </li></ul><ul><li>When the author updates the RSS file, the user is automatically notified of the new items and may read them on their schedule. </li></ul>
  7. 8. Implications of RSS <ul><li>Information received in a single location </li></ul><ul><li>Information received in quickly </li></ul><ul><li>Reduced need to visit the originating Web site </li></ul>
  8. 9. Are there different versions of RSS? <ul><li>Yes. In fact, there are currently eight different versions: RSS 0.90, 0.91, 0.92, 0.93, 0.94, 1.0, 2.0, & Atom Feeds </li></ul><ul><li>Each has different features from the author’s point of view. </li></ul><ul><li>Today’s aggregators support all of the versions transparently. </li></ul><ul><li>RSS 2.0 & Atom are the most common. </li></ul>
  9. 10. <ul><li><?xml version=&quot;1.0&quot; encoding=&quot;UTF-8&quot; ?> </li></ul><ul><li><rss version=&quot;2.0&quot;> </li></ul><ul><li><channel> </li></ul><ul><li><title>BCR: The Third Indicator</title> </li></ul><ul><li><link>http://www.bcr.org/publications/thirdind/</link> </li></ul><ul><li><description>The Third Indicator, published monthly, is a technical memo focusing on OCLC products and services. It includes general OCLC news as well as detailed technical information on cataloging, reference and resource sharing. Announcements of new OCLC developments are also included.</description> </li></ul><ul><li><lastBuildDate>Tue, 21 Sep 2004 21:37:39 GMT</lastBuildDate> </li></ul><ul><li><generator>ListGarden Program 1.01</generator> </li></ul><ul><li><docs>http://blogs.law.harvard.edu/tech/rss</docs> </li></ul><ul><li><item> </li></ul><ul><li><title>WorldCat Resource Sharing Training</title> </li></ul><ul><li><link>http://www.bcr.org/publications/thirdind/2004/august/augsharetrain04.html</link> </li></ul><ul><li><description>If you'd like to see what WorldCat Resource Sharing looks like and learn more about it, visit the OCLC Web site at www.oclc.org/ill/migration/ or view the WorldCat Resource Sharing tutorial at www5.oclc.org/downloads/tutorials/firstsearch/sv/rsbasics/intro/index.html/.</description> </li></ul><ul><li><pubDate>Tue, 21 Sep 2004 19:29:47 GMT</pubDate> </li></ul><ul><li><guid isPermaLink=&quot;false&quot;>thirdind-2004-08-21-19-29-47</guid> </li></ul><ul><li></item> </li></ul><ul><li></channel> </li></ul><ul><li></rss> </li></ul>What does RSS look like?
  10. 11. How can I find feeds? <ul><li>Feedster </li></ul><ul><li>Bloglines </li></ul><ul><li>Blogrolls A list of blogs/feeds read by another blogger </li></ul><ul><li>Look for the orange icon… </li></ul>
  11. 12. How do I subscribe to a feed? <ul><li>Look for an orange icon: </li></ul><ul><li>Depending on your aggregator, the subscription procedure may range from copying and pasting the link to right-clicking and selecting “subscribe”. </li></ul>
  12. 13. More RSS icons <ul><li>“ Support the Common Feed Icon” by Rogers Cadenhead http://www.cadenhead.org/workbench/news/2872/support-common-feed-icon </li></ul>
  13. 14. A standard icon? <ul><li>The move is to establish this icon, originally proposed by the Firefox, folks as the syndication icon. </li></ul><ul><li>Microsoft’s Internet Explorer 7 will use this icon. </li></ul><ul><li>http://www.feedicons.com/ </li></ul>
  14. 15. Podcasts <ul><li>Uses RSS to syndicate audio content </li></ul><ul><li>RSS 2.0 <enclosure> </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Like adding an attachment to an e-mail </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Audio Formats </li></ul><ul><ul><li>MP3 (Open Source) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>AAC (Apple Proprietary) </li></ul></ul><ul><li>iPod not necessary </li></ul>
  15. 16. Podcasts in iTunes
  16. 17. Notable Feeds <ul><li>Librarian.net www.librarian.net </li></ul><ul><li>LISNews www.lisnews.com </li></ul><ul><li>The Shifted Librarian theshiftedlibrarian.com </li></ul><ul><li>The Travelin’ Librarian travelinlibrarian.info </li></ul><ul><li>Tame the Web tametheweb.com/ttwblog </li></ul><ul><li>Unshelved www.overduemedia.com </li></ul><ul><li>PaperCuts papercuts.tscpl.org </li></ul><ul><li>Gizmodo www.gizmodo.com </li></ul><ul><li>Security Now! www.grc.com/securitynow.htm </li></ul><ul><li>Inside The Net & This Week in Tech (TWiT) thisweekintech.com </li></ul><ul><li>Boing Boing boingboing.net </li></ul><ul><li>Google News </li></ul><ul><li>isbn.nu </li></ul><ul><li>del.icio.us </li></ul><ul><li>flickr </li></ul>
  17. 18. Integrating RSS into Your Web site Part 2: Reading Feeds Michael Sauers, BCR Internet Librarian 2006 22 October 2006
  18. 19. What is an Aggregator? <ul><li>An 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. -Wikipedia </li></ul><ul><li>It’s what you need to retrieve and read RSS feeds. </li></ul>
  19. 20. What are the different types of aggregators? <ul><li>Standalone Clients </li></ul><ul><ul><li>FeedReader , Radio UserLand </li></ul></ul><ul><li>PIM add-ins </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Pluck, NewsGator, intraVnews </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Browser add-ins </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Firefox , Sage </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Web-based </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Bloglines , NewsIsFree </li></ul></ul><ul><li>A list is available @ http://www.lights.com/weblogs/rss.html </li></ul>
  20. 21. RSS file in Firefox
  21. 22. RSS file in IE6
  22. 23. RSS file in IE7b3
  23. 24. RSS file w/ associated style sheet
  24. 25. Why do I need an aggregator? <ul><li>Most importantly it makes the content of the feed readable </li></ul><ul><li>Checks for updates automatically </li></ul><ul><li>Notifies you of new information </li></ul><ul><li>Displays only new items for you </li></ul><ul><li>May allow you to sort and save information </li></ul>
  25. 26. Types of Aggregators <ul><li>Client </li></ul><ul><li>Add-on </li></ul><ul><li>Built-in </li></ul><ul><li>Server-based </li></ul><ul><li>Web-based service </li></ul>
  26. 27. FeedReader (client)
  27. 28. Pluck (add-on for IE)
  28. 29. Firefox 1.5
  29. 30. Netscape 8
  30. 31. IE7beta 2
  31. 32. Feed on Feeds (server)
  32. 33. Bloglines (Web-based service)
  33. 34. Subscribing to a feed
  34. 35. Bloglines Toolkit (for Firefox)
  35. 36. Subscribing via the Toolkit
  36. 37. The Bloglines Bookmarklet
  37. 38. Integrating RSS into Your Web site Part 3: Creating Feeds Michael Sauers, BCR Internet Librarian 2006 22 October 2006
  38. 39. How do I create a feed? <ul><li>Hand-rolled You type the markup and the content </li></ul><ul><li>Semi-automated You type the content, software generates the markup. </li></ul><ul><li>Fully-automated You put the content in your blog and software generates a feed based on that content. </li></ul>
  39. 40. FeedSpring
  40. 41. FeedSpring
  41. 42. FeedSpring
  42. 43. FeedSpring
  43. 44. FeedSpring
  44. 45. FeedSpring
  45. 46. FeedSpring
  46. 47. FeedSpring <ul><li>Limitations </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Local installation limits mobility and posters to a single computer. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>No built-in FTP. Must transfer the .xml file to the server manually. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Still in beta (but what isn’t these days?) </li></ul></ul>
  47. 48. FeedXS
  48. 49. FeedXS
  49. 50. FeedXS
  50. 51. FeedXS
  51. 52. FeedXS
  52. 53. FeedXS
  53. 54. FeedXS
  54. 55. FeedXS
  55. 56. FeedXS <ul><li>Limitations </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Few options for controlling the feed </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>No support for enclosures </li></ul></ul>
  56. 57. RapidFeeds: FeedManager
  57. 58. RapidFeeds: FeedManager
  58. 59. RapidFeeds: FeedManager
  59. 60. RapidFeeds: FeedManager
  60. 61. RapidFeeds: FeedManager
  61. 62. RapidFeeds: FeedManager
  62. 63. RapidFeeds: FeedManager
  63. 64. RapidFeeds: FeedManager
  64. 65. RapidFeeds: FeedManager
  65. 66. RapidFeeds: FeedManager <ul><li>Limitations </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Registration does not work with newer e-mail addresses. (Insisted my .info address was invalid.) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Does not allow publishing to another server so if the company disappears, your feed goes with it. </li></ul></ul>
  66. 67. ListGarden
  67. 68. ListGarden
  68. 69. ListGarden
  69. 70. ListGarden
  70. 71. ListGarden
  71. 72. ListGarden <ul><li>Limitations </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Depending of type of server installed on, may not be secure. (i.e. no passwords on cgi-bin directories.) </li></ul></ul>
  72. 73. RSSxl
  73. 74. RSSxl
  74. 75. RSSxl
  75. 76. RSSxl
  76. 77. RSSxl
  77. 78. RSSxl
  78. 79. RSSxl <ul><li>Limitations </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Solid knowledge of HTML required to get parsing correct. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Works better on pages with simpler layouts. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>The validation code “will change each month and you will need to visit this page for the new code.” (Though I’ve found feeds continue to work without updating the code.) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>“ If you are using this tool to publish an RSS feed from your website, then you must include a visible HTML link to www.wotzwot.com on your site next to the link to your feed like the following: ‘Powered by RSSxl’” </li></ul></ul>
  79. 80. Sabifoo
  80. 81. Sabifoo
  81. 82. Sabifoo
  82. 83. Sabifoo
  83. 84. Sabifoo
  84. 85. Sabifoo <ul><li>Limitations </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Third party service could disappear at any time. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Doesn’t always work well with Yahoo! Messenger and AIM. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Does not interpret HTML in posts. </li></ul></ul>
  85. 86. RSS Calendar
  86. 87. RSS Calendar
  87. 88. RSS Calendar
  88. 89. RSS Calendar
  89. 90. RSS Calendar
  90. 91. RSS Calendar
  91. 92. RSS Calendar
  92. 93. RSS Calendar <ul><li>Limitations </li></ul><ul><ul><li>No importing from existing calendars </li></ul></ul>
  93. 94. Integrating RSS into Your Web site Part 4: Republishing Feeds Michael Sauers, BCR Internet Librarian 2006 22 October 2006
  94. 95. Integrating feed content into your Web site <ul><li>Grab content from multiple RSS feeds </li></ul><ul><li>Reduce and/or mash it </li></ul><ul><li>Republish it on your site </li></ul>
  95. 96. Feedroll
  96. 97. Feedroll
  97. 98. Feedroll
  98. 99. Feedroll
  99. 100. Feedroll <ul><li>Limitations </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Free version works only with pre-programmed feeds </li></ul></ul>
  100. 101. RapidFeeds: MySite
  101. 102. RapidFeeds: MySite
  102. 103. RapidFeeds: MySite
  103. 104. RapidFeeds: MySite
  104. 105. RapidFeeds: MySite
  105. 106. RapidFeeds: MySite
  106. 107. RapidFeeds: MySite <ul><li>Limitations </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Registration does not work with newer e-mail addresses. (Insisted my .info address was invalid) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Code supplied is longer than all others as it contains all the CSS. </li></ul></ul>
  107. 108. RSS2HTML
  108. 109. RSS2HTML
  109. 110. RSS2HTML
  110. 111. RSS2HTML
  111. 112. RSS2HTML
  112. 113. RSS2HTML
  113. 114. RSS2HTML
  114. 115. RSS2HTML <ul><li>Limitations </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Third party service could disappear at any time. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Minimal customization / limited to their templates / can’t make it look like your site. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Did not work well on some feeds and not at all on others. (No luck with GoogleNews. Mixed results with Flickr.) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Given a URL to embed with, not a script, which forces embedding via iframe . </li></ul></ul>
  115. 116. Feed2JS http://www.feed2js.org/
  116. 117. Build
  117. 118. Preview
  118. 119. Style
  119. 120. Generate Javascript
  120. 121. Place the Javascript in the page
  121. 122. View the results
  122. 123. Feed2JS <ul><li>Limitations </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Hosted service (though you can download and install it on your own server which is recommended) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Client must have JavaScript turned on for it to work. </li></ul></ul>
  123. 124. FeedDigest
  124. 125. FeedDigest
  125. 126. FeedDigest
  126. 127. FeedDigest
  127. 128. FeedDigest
  128. 129. FeedDigest
  129. 130. FeedDigest
  130. 131. FeedDigest
  131. 132. FeedDigest
  132. 133. FeedDigest <ul><li>Limitations </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Third party service could disappear at any time. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Limited to five feeds in free version. </li></ul></ul>
  133. 134. Scrolling RSS News Ticker
  134. 135. Scrolling RSS News Ticker
  135. 136. Scrolling RSS News Ticker
  136. 137. Scrolling RSS News Ticker
  137. 138. Scrolling RSS News Ticker <ul><li>Limitations </li></ul><ul><ul><li>JavaScript required </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Shows small advertisement </li></ul></ul>
  138. 139. RSS Scrollbox Widget
  139. 140. RSS Scrollbox Widget
  140. 141. RSS Scrollbox Widget
  141. 142. RSS Scrollbox Widget <ul><li>Limitations </li></ul><ul><ul><li>JavaScript required </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Shows small advertisement </li></ul></ul>
  142. 143. Grazr
  143. 144. Grazr
  144. 145. Grazr
  145. 146. Grazr
  146. 147. Grazr
  147. 148. Grazr <ul><li>Limitations </li></ul><ul><ul><li>JavaScript required </li></ul></ul>
  148. 149. LibraryThing Blog Widget
  149. 150. LibraryThing Blog Widget
  150. 151. LibraryThing Blog Widget <ul><li>Limitations </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Requires JavaScript </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Requires LibraryThing account </li></ul></ul>
  151. 152. Integrating RSS into Your Web site Part 5: Advanced Feed Manipulation Michael Sauers, BCR Internet Librarian 2006 22 October 2006
  152. 153. FeedBlendr
  153. 154. FeedBlendr
  154. 155. FeedBlendr
  155. 156. FeedBlendr
  156. 157. FeedBlendr <ul><li>Limitations </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Could not get OPML importing to work. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Third party service could disappear at any time. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>“If this blend is not accessed for more than 2 weeks, it will be removed from the database and will need to be recreated.” </li></ul></ul>
  157. 158. FeedBurner
  158. 159. FeedBurner
  159. 160. FeedBurner
  160. 161. FeedBurner
  161. 162. FeedBurner
  162. 163. FeedBurner
  163. 164. FeedBurner
  164. 165. FeedBurner
  165. 166. FeedBurner
  166. 167. FeedBurner
  167. 168. FeedBurner
  168. 169. FeedBurner
  169. 170. FeedBurner
  170. 171. FeedBurner
  171. 172. FeedBurner
  172. 173. FeedBurner
  173. 174. FeedBurner <ul><li>Limitations </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Since by using this you get a new feed URL, it is not recommended you use it on existing feeds. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Your feed will be relying on a third party to work. If the company goes under, your feed will disappear. </li></ul></ul>
  174. 175. Feed Crier
  175. 176. Feed Crier
  176. 177. Feed Crier <ul><li>Limitations </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Only three feeds for free </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Free version advertisement supported </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Works only with AIM </li></ul></ul>
  177. 178. ZapTXT
  178. 179. ZapTXT
  179. 180. ZapTXT
  180. 181. ZapTXT
  181. 182. ZapTXT
  182. 183. ZapTXT <ul><li>Limitations </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Can’t handle feeds that require logins </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Sometimes reports a feed as “not valid” and there’s nothing you can do about it. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Searches on multiple keywords are “OR” searches. “AND” searches don’t seem to be possible. </li></ul></ul>
  183. 184. Mail2RSS
  184. 185. Mail2RSS
  185. 186. Mail2RSS
  186. 187. Mail2RSS
  187. 188. Mail2RSS <ul><li>Limitations </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Bloglines doesn’t like the RSS2.0 feeds, use the 1.0 link instead </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Mail automatically deletes after seven days </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Feeds are limited to 20 items </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Potential security issue when using Subscribe with Bloglines bookmarklet (next slide) </li></ul></ul>
  188. 189. Mail2RSS
  189. 190. RssFwd
  190. 191. RssFwd
  191. 192. RssFwd
  192. 193. RssFwd
  193. 194. RssFwd
  194. 195. RssFwd
  195. 196. RssFwd <ul><li>Limitations </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Some (including me) argue that converting RSS to e-mail defeats the purpose of RSS. </li></ul></ul>
  196. 197. Feed2Podcast
  197. 198. Feed2Podcast
  198. 199. Feed2Podcast
  199. 200. Feed2Podcast
  200. 201. Feed2Podcast <ul><li>Limitations </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Your feeds are read by a computer generated voice. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Non-English words are not well supported. </li></ul></ul>
  201. 202. Contact information <ul><li>Michael Sauers </li></ul><ul><li>[email_address] </li></ul><ul><li>http://travelinlibrarian.info/ </li></ul><ul><li>http://del.icio.us/travelinlibrarian/il2006/rss </li></ul>

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