For the last few years I’ve been hearing chatter that RSS “is dead”, yet, I still continue to use it every single day. So, I thought – lets turn this on its head. Lets bring RSS “back” by teaching at least one friend how to use it.
The vast majority of people that surf the Internet on a daily basis are going to but a few sites. They wake up in the morning, check Facebook, Twitter, CNN, and perhaps one or two other sites – turn on the TV, check those sites again, do some household chores, check those sites again, and so on. Its absurd. They are so silo-ed they don’t even realize what they’re missing.
There are hundreds of millions of websites. However, if these same people were to check say, a few hundred websites per day, they’d be able to get little else done because it would take too long. Who wants to visit a few hundred URLs on a daily basis just to see what’s new?
Well, that is where we geeks who know about RSS come in and help out. We teach them RSS to save them time and to expand their web horizon.
How do you use RSS? First, you get a Google Reader (update June 2016: use Feedly as Google Reader is gone now) account or the app of your choice for your platform be it PC, Mac, iPhone, Android, Blackberry, etc. All of these platforms have fairly good RSS readers and if you’re a geek you already know about them. Feedly is available on the web for your PC or Mac and via both Android and iOS applications.
Once you have a Feedly account the service makes it easy to subscribe to your favorite sites. For instance, you can click “Add” and type in cdevroe.com to add my site. Or, you can search for topics like kayaking or photography.
So, pass this on. Find someone that you think could benefit from using RSS on a daily basis – sit down with them and teach them the ropes. RSS isn’t dead, we just don’t talk about it enough anymore.