Newspapers are deadPosted: 2008-05-01 Permanent Link
At least to me.
Everyday I read the CBC, Yahoo News, and the local newspaper but not on paper.
I read local news, business updates, technology news, sports headlines, as well as numerous other sources of information and news on topics ranging from productivity to design to technology. All in all, over 200 sources of news and information are sent to me and it usually arrives before ever reaching the print version. Oh and did I mention it’s free.
How do I do it?
Through something called Really Simple Syndication (or RSS for short). It sounds like technical jargon (and it is) but it’s actually simple. RSS, sometimes called a Feed, is a way for you to receive content from a website, without actually needing to visit the site. You use something called a Reader to, well, read the feed. You subscribe to a Feed right from the website your visiting and you do it anonymously. That’s right; no one knows you’re receiving the content, you don’t have to sign up, give out your email address, nothing. Wow, no more email spam!
Where do I sign up?
Most modern websites have an RSS Feed of news and information. When you visit a site you may see an icon on the website or in your browsers address bar. To subscribe to the Feed, just click the icon. (If you don’t see an icon, then you might need to find some text, usually at the bottom of the web page that says RSS, Feed, or XML, just click that).
So how do I Read the Feed?
As I mentioned earlier, all you need is a reader. The reader will need to be connected to the internet to get updates, but once it is updated the choice is yours. Readers come in many different formats and selection is usually based on how you intend to read the feed. You will have to ask some questions, Will you read the feed:
- from my computer while connected to the internet?
- from different computers, work/home while connected to the internet?
- from my smart phone?
- from my computer, but not connected to the internet?
- from a printed copy?
If you are going to read it while connected to the internet, or from multiple computers and maybe a mobile phone, you should use an online reader, like Google Reader. This is the same company that provides Google Search. As long as you have access to the internet you will have access to your reader.
If you are going to read it, but not while connected to the internet, then you should use an offline reader. These readers will connect to the internet to get updates, but store the information on your computer so you can read it later. Programs like FeedDemon for Windows, NetNewsWire for Mac, and Liferea for Linux are all excellent examples of offline readers that you can read from your computer or print out for later.
If your goal is to replace your newspaper, a reader called FeedJournal lets you read your feeds in a format that looks just like a newspaper. These personal newspapers can be saved to a PDF file for reading on a computer or printed for reading on the train.
Keeping up-to-date by using feeds and readers is easy and safe. Pick a reader and visit your favorite website to get started. We have also provided a categorized list of websites below to start you off.
Productivity and Life: