RSS feeds and how to use them
Subscribe for timely content updates
A web “feed”, also known as “RSS feed” or “Atom feed” depending on technicalities, is a stream of data that gets updated every time something new is added to the webpage it tracks. For example, a blog’s feed will contain all newly published articles.
The usefulness of this tool is that it allows specialised programs or applications—feed readers—to automatically check multiple websites for updates, based on the list of feed subscriptions. The user gets all new information in a centralised place—the reader application—rather than manually checking every single website.
Think of the feed reader as your “unified inbox” to all updates from the websites you follow.
To subscribe, the user will typically have to copy the feed’s link into their reader’s appropriate place. Most applications/services make this straightforward. Note that “subscribe” is just a standard copy-paste of a link. You do not share private information with the website that provides the feed.
Feeds are best suited for following websites that do not post updates very often, like personal blogs. Never miss the occasional publication. Conversely, they are not great for tracking high frequency sites, such as news outlets. The sheer volume of publications will quickly become overwhelming. Keep the list of RSS subscriptions limited to the type of content you do not want to miss.
Feeds on protesilaos.com
There are several types of regular updates on this website. Each has its own feed, as it caters to a potentially different audience.
- News and announcements
- Books and Essays
- Political writings
- Coding blog
- Comments on life issues
- Interpretations and critiques
- My poems
- Master feed (captures every new publication)
For the technically minded, the XML source of each feed conforms with the RSS 2.0 specification (suggestions for improvements are always welcome).