Blogs and RSS – Trawling the Internet for Meaning

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Blogs and RSS – Trawling the Internet for Meaning

(ESUG 2004, Koethen)

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Blogs and RSS – Trawling the Internet for Meaning

  1. 1. Blogs and RSS – Trawling the Internet for Meaning
  2. 2. Agenda • What’s a Blog? • What’s RSS? • Why is any of this interesting?
  3. 3. What’s a Blog?
  4. 4. Blogs • Blogs are – Personal Publishing – Getting to be very influential • Infoworld (technology) • Scoble (MS Evangelist) • InstaPundit, Andrew Sullivan (politics) • Etc
  5. 5. What’s a Blog? • I started to notice blogs about 2 years ago
  6. 6. What’s a Blog • My first thought was – How hard could it be? – So I set out to implement my own blogging tools – This turned out to involve a lot more than I thought
  7. 7. What’s a Blog An Ad-hoc editorial page
  8. 8. What’s a Blog • At first, I had no idea how this would work
  9. 9. Searching for Readers
  10. 10. Interest • The first few months, readership was light RSS Came up. What?
  11. 11. Interest • RSS • http://backend.userland.com/rss • It turns out that Syndication is very important
  12. 12. RSS and Aggregation
  13. 13. RSS • RSS is an XML format – A channel – Items in a channel • Title • Link • Description
  14. 14. RSS Channel - <channel> - <title>Cincom Smalltalk Blog - Smalltalk with Rants</title> - <link>http://www.cincomsmalltalk.com/blog/blogView</link< - <description>Cincom Product Manager</description> - <webMaster>jrobertson@cincom.com</webMaster> - <lastBuildDate>Mon, 09 Jun 2003 20:21:27 EDT</lastBuildDate> - </channel>
  15. 15. RSS Item - <item> - <title>Another Smalltalk?</title> - <link>http://www.cincomsmalltalk.com/blog/blogView?showComment s=true&entry=3232634632</link> - <description>Alan Knight's <a href="http://www.cincomsmalltalk.com/blog/blogView?showCommen ts=true&entry=3232543412">comment here</a> led me to <a href="http://www.ambrai.com/">ambrai.com</a> - not a lot of details, but it looks like a native Macintosh Smalltalk is busy being born!</description> - <category>smalltalk</category> - <pubDate>Mon, 09 Jun 2003 18:03:52 EDT</pubDate> - </item>
  16. 16. RSS • The format is a rich, extensible way to convey a headline service
  17. 17. RSS • So I added an RSS Feed • Traffic went up! • Still had no idea what it was good for
  18. 18. Aggregators
  19. 19. BottomFeeder
  20. 20. Aggregators • There are tons of them • http://www.hebig.org/blogs/archives /main/000877.php
  21. 21. Aggregators • Working on BottomFeeder drove the blog, and vice-versa • As we added features to BottomFeeder, I added features to the blog
  22. 22. Why Should You Care?
  23. 23. What’s it Good For • You Control the Vertical
  24. 24. What’s it Good For? • An opt-in audience
  25. 25. What’s it Good For? • We use it extensively at Cincom – PR feed – Feeds for our Bug reporting – Feeds for our Wikis – Feeds for our Version control tool • There’s support for this for CVS as well
  26. 26. Product Managers • Publicize your product – Tech features – What problem it solves – Who should want it – MS does a lot of this – 400+ Softies are blogging now – We do a lot for Cincom Smalltalk – there are 14 bloggers for CST at http://www.cincomsmalltalk.com/userblogs
  27. 27. Technical Leads • What the product does • How it does it • Gain ‘tech cred’
  28. 28. Marketers • What does your company do? – Connect with actual people
  29. 29. Summary
  30. 30. Summary • So what’s all this being used for – Publicity – Project Management – Marketing – Community Building – Communication
  31. 31. Contact Info • James Robertson – Jarober@gosmalltalk.com – Jrobertson@cincom.com • BottomFeeder – http://www.cincomsmalltalk.com/BottomFeeder • Blog – http://www.cincomsmalltalk.com/CincomSmalltalkWiki/ CSTBlogModule

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