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Search Alerts

How to set up a database search and have the results emailed to you at regular intervals.

RSS Feeds - Introduction

RSS Primer: One Page Quick Introduction to RSS

Much of the following is taken from the WhatIsRSS.com web site (http://www.whatisrss.com)

What is RSS?

RSS (Rich Site Summary or Really Simple Syndication) is a format for delivering regularly changing web content or receiving web information. Many news-related sites, weblogs and other online publishers syndicate their content as an RSS Feed to whoever wants it.

Why RSS? Benefits and Reasons for using RSS

RSS solves a problem for people who regularly use the web. It allows you to easily stay informed by retrieving the latest content from the sites you are interested in. You save time by not needing to visit each site individually. You ensure your privacy, by not needing to join each site's email newsletter. Also, you do not clutter up your email since you access the content of your RSS feed only when you want to access it.  The number of sites offering RSS feeds is growing rapidly and includes big names like Yahoo News.

What do I need to do to read an RSS Feed? RSS Feed Readers and News Aggregators

  • Feed reader or news aggregator software allows you to grab the RSS feeds from various sites and display them for you to read and use.
  • A variety of RSS readers are available for different platforms.

  • Some of the library's databases have their own reader sites that you are automatically taken to when you login to that database.

  • Some other feed readers, some of which are more sophisticated  than those mentioned above,  include FeedReader (Windows) (http://www.feedreader.com/)
  • Once you have your feed reader, it is a matter of finding sites that syndicate content and adding their RSS feed to your feed reader. Many sites display a small icon with the acronyms RSS, XML, or RDF to let you know a feed is available.

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