Believe it or not, I keep up-to-date with over 65 websites every single day and I do it in less than 15 minutes. How? I’m glad you asked.
The facts are, a lot of your friends, family or even coworkers have created their own website(s) and they are posting information on this site that you would be interested in reading. However, the tedious task of visiting these sites on a regular basis, one by one, to see if anything has been posted can be time consuming and often disappointing; in effect, you lose interest and stop checking because it’s wasting your time.
Enter RSS feeds and readers.
A few years ago, web developers started realizing that this was an issue and came up with a solution. They call it an “RSS feed.” RSS stands for “Really Simple Syndication.” The whole point of inventing an RSS feed was to make “it possible for people to keep up with their favorite web sites in an automated manner that’s easier than checking them manually.” (Wikipedia) Sounds like a relief huh!
So how does it work?
It’s actually very easy. Every time you go to a site and you see the acronym “RSS” and/or this icon , it means that this site has made it possible for you to automate their content through an RSS feed. You’ll need a RSS reader software to take advantage of this technology. You can find out more about them here, or you can do as I do and use Google Reader. I like the Google Reader program because it’s web based so no matter where I am or what computer I’m using, I have access to my account and can get caught up virtually anywhere. All you need is a Google account and you’re good-to-go.
Once you have your RSS Reader software setup, your next step is to begin “subscribing” to the RSS feeds on the websites you visit regularly. Here’s how to do this using Firefox and Google Reader (assuming you now have a Google Reader account). Keep in mind, I am on a Mac.
1. Open your preferences in Firefox (Preferences > Applications > Highlight “Web Feed” and select “Google” from the drop down menu)
2. Go to www.kyleandkristy.com/kyle and click on the orange icon in the address bar
3. When the Google Reader pages comes up, you’ll have two buttons to choose from: “Add to Google Homepage” or “Add to Google Reader” > Select “Add to Google Reader”
You’ve now added your first feed to Google Reader! From this point on, all you need to do is log into Google Reader and it’ll tell you if I’ve updated my blog. In fact, if I’ve updated it several times since you last visited, there will be a number inside a parentheses indicating the number of posts you have to read to catch up. So simple and a very productive way to keep up-to-date with all those websites you’re interested in.
Have questions? Leave a comment and I’ll respond to you. If you’d like further instruction, just post your request in the comment section and I’ll do my best to post on this subject again.
I hope this was helpful for you.