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What is RSS?

RSS (Rich Site Summaries or Really Simple Syndication) is a way for websites to summarize their content, such as news articles or blog entries, and deliver headlines, descriptions, and links directly to users. RSS feeds provide web content or summaries of the content together with links to the full versions of the content.

Getting started

The first thing you'll need is an RSS Reader. This is an application that checks RSS feeds and lets you read any new items that have been added to the website or blog you are interested in. RSS Readers, which are also sometimes called News Aggregators or Newsreaders, can be found in "free" versions, as well as subscription versions.

Choosing an RSS Reader

When it comes to choosing an RSS Reader you have three choices, a Web Based RSS Reader, a Desktop RSS Reader or an Integrated RSS Reader. All do essentially the same thing but there are a few differences. Readers are available for computers, along with PDA’s and smart phones. 

One of the main differences between RSS readers is whether they are stand-alone clients (Desktop based) or are web-based. Stand-alone readers are useful if you want to access your feeds even if you're offline. By contrast, web-based readers require you to be online to access your feeds.

Web-based RSS Readers

These let you read your RSS feeds from any computer and include the following:

  • Netvibes
  • Google Reader
  • My Yahoo
  • Rojo
  • My Aol
  • Pageflakes
  • Bloglines
  • Newsgator