RSS feed icon

Despite the fact that RSS technology is no longer widely used, it is regularly included in theory assessments and learners really seem to battle to understand what it is. The technology still exists and I bet that completing a practical discovery of what it is will help to clear things up!

RSS stands for Real Simple Syndication. It is a fairly old technology which provides a means of subscribing to newsfeeds so that you could have all your news headlines presented to you in a feed reader rather than having to browse the individual websites.

It has largely been replaced by news syndication websites and social media.

What do I need?

A feed-reader, a connection to the internet and some RSS feeds to subscribe to.

What IS an RSS feed? It is information made available from a website in a structured format that can be fetched/pulled into a feed reader in a very specific format. WordPress website software is capable of providing an RSS feed.

Where will I find an RSS Reader?

You can use the Feeder extension for Chrome or the Feedbro plugin for Firefox.

Some e-mail applications (Microsoft Outlook) have the ability to subscribe to RSS feeds.

How do I subscribe to an RSS feed?

Once you have installed a feed reader in your browser, you will be able to visit a website that has an RSS feed and subscribe by clicking on the relevant icon for the feed reader.

Advantages:

  • all your news conveniently in one place
  • saves time as it minimises “surfing”
  • less or no spam and advertising
  • uses less data as it excludes images, etc.

Disadvantages:

  • graphics and photos as well as the full design of the website is excluded
  • not many people use RSS technology these days
  • can contribute to information overload

By MisterFoxOnline

CAT Educator

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