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What's an RSS Feed and What Will it Do For Me?

Mar 2, 2008
Have you ever been surfing the internet and seen a little orange and white icon on lots of the websites or blogs you visit? You know, the one that has a dot in the lower left corner and two things that look like parenthesis above it? I've spoken with a lot of people who ignore the icon because they don't how great it is, or what it can do for them. I'm going to explain why you should pay more attention to sites with this icon.

When you see the orange icon on a website or a blog, it means that you can subscribe to the RSS feed through a reader. If that last part sounds confusing, don't worry. You don't really need to know what RSS means, but you need to know what it does.

RSS solves a big problem that some people have as they surf the net. They find sites and blogs that they like, and they want to remember those sites so they can come back often, but the only thing they know how to do is to bookmark the site. It can become tedious to have to check your bookmarks every time you want to remember a site. So what if you could get those sites and blogs to come to you? With RSS, you can.

First, you need to sign up for a reader. A reader is like a mailbox. When you click on an orange icon on your favorite blog, your reader will remember that. Then, every time that blog is updated with new content, it is sent to your reader mailbox. The reader is like the internet's paperboy, delivering the content right to your doorstep. It's great!

So go sign up for a reader. I like Google's, found at reader.google.com. Then just browse the internet like usual, and when you see the icon, which is usually accompanied by the words 'subscribe in a reader', or just 'subscribe', click on it and then go check your reader. There's your content, right in your reader mailbox.

It's that simple and it makes things so much easier!

I do have one recommendation though. Don't get too caught up in signing up for other people's feeds. Only sign up for the ones that you think will be of some benefit to you. I say this because you don't want to check your reader every day only to find hundreds of updates that you can't possibly keep up with. A reader can be a great too, but just don't get carried away.

Anyhow, now that you know, go to it!
About the Author
Nathan Blair is a real estate professional in Salt Lake City, Utah, specializing in residential home sales. He enjoys helping people who are relocating to Utah, or who are moving from inside the state. Nathan would be happy to help you or anyone you know buy or sell a home in Utah.
You can visit his Salt Lake City Utah Real Estate Blog and his Utah real estate website for more information.
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