The above video does a pretty great job of explaining what RSS is and what it can do for you. For this thing, we’re going to be using Google Reader, just like the guy in the video. (You won’t have to sign up for a new account with a different service!)
If you want some more info on RSS and Google Reader before getting to the tasks, here are a few things for you.
- Common Craft – a little bit more technical info from the people who made the video
- RSS explained the Oprah way
- Google Reader tour – a brief overview of the features of Google Reader, some of these are more advanced
- go to Google Reader and sign in with your gmail credentials
- read the Welcome to Google Reader info that appears on your screen, it looks like this
- subscribe to a couple of feeds *
Google Reader makes subscribing simple. I can click on the Add Supscription button and type in espn.com and immediately the headlines and news stories form ESPN are pulled into my reader. Sometimes, Google Reader won’t know quite what I mean. If I type the web address in the subscription box (e.g. amazon.com) it will pull something it thinks is right and ask me to confirm. Also, if the site has more than one feed (e.g. twitter.com) I will be faced with a list of choices.
Alternatively I can grab a feed while visiting a site and add it to google reader. While on a site with a feed my web browser indicates one is available by turning the RSS icon orange [screen cap]. Clicking on that icon will takes me to the feed page. I then copy the address, go to google reader and paste the address into the add subscription box.
- write a blog post about your thoughts on RSS and/or Google Reader
* Feeds you might choose from:
OCL Calendar of Events
Neil Gaiman's Journal
Meg Cabot's Diary
Give Em What They Want at Early Word