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RSS: Now Get Online Articles Delivered to You

Sometimes you feel overwhelmed by the information that are simply overthrown at you the moment you open your web browser to your homepage or any other websites. You may be wondering how to indeed raise your efficiency to a whole new level by consuming web information using Really Simple Syndication or RSS

RSS provides an easy way to gather and display information from varied and multiple sources. It’s a small orange RSS or XML icons inviting you to “syndicate this page” on some of the sites that you visit regularly.

In other words RSS is a timesaver. Suppose you spend few minutes in scanning each site looking for new information, instead you can subscribe to RSS feeds for those sites and news articles that will be delivered to you as soon as they become available.

RSS feeds as targeted headlines for web surfing. They are compiled, updated and distributed in EML that is Extensible Markup Language. Each article contains a list of new articles from a site and also includes a title, summary and a link to the full article for each term.

To read these feeds you need a tool known as feed reader or news aggregator which maintains a list of the web feeds you syndicated, checks them at regular intervals for updates and displays their contents in readable format.

The pros of this technology are numerous, such as

  • RSS feeds are timely as the subscribers get updates and breaking news as soon as they are available.
  • RSS feeds are cost effective as the distribution and delivery costs are very low.
  • RSS helps to manage and organize content, the messages, articles all can be archived, sorted and categorized automatically.
  • It helps to maintain privacy and anonymity. You can fully control the subscription to and removal from RSS feeds. When selecting the feeds that you want to syndicate you don’t have to provide with your email or any personal information.

Now it’s time for some cons:

  • RSS feeds do not provide with any history. If you miss any article of interest you won’t be able to read them.
  • RSS feeds are bandwidth waster because they automatically download RSS files to check for updates and changes.
  • RSS feeds are complicated to set up as people are still unknown about its function and importance.
  • RSS feeds usually show an abridged version of the content which can be at times cryptic and may require you to open your web browser to see the full article.

So to start with RSS feeds you need to have feed reader. You can opt for the following two types of feed reader:

  • WEB-BASED:  which is convenient but comes with a price tag that is limited functionality and speed.
  • APPLICATION BASED: with this you can get a more polished and full-featured product but it lacks mobility.

When you want to unsubscribe from RSS feed then you simply have to click unsubscribe button in your RSS newsreader. You can also right-click the item or folder and from the drop down menu select Delete.

Google VS Bing: The Search is On

Although Google is the most widely used search engine online, its competitors are quickly gaining ground and proving that consumerism is still a valued concept in this world. One of these major competitors is Bing. Although not many type Bing.com first when searching, many are aware of it and are quickly learning to appreciate the features it offers that Google does not.

A quick comparison shows you what offers both have put on the table. Bing with its edgy and modern homepage shows you a Flash image generator lures the people in because it’s human nature. Prettier things are more impressive. However, looking more closely, some things can’t be achieved through Bing. For example, Bing currently, does not allow video or news xml sitemaps. This makes it a bit harder to find the associated sub-sites when conducting a search.

Barring that little setback, Bing’s results look like they have more immediate content with local connotations that can be pursued without leaving the page. This makes it easier for you to find resources that are near your location, like weather, movie show times and upcoming shows. Although, Google does have similar results for weather but usually shows only one source.

Google, though, has one-upped Bing on the site links front. They can be edited in Google but not in Bing. These make it easier for the user to navigate the website without having to go to the site directly.

On Bing, the back links report on Bing Webmaster Tools offers a list of links pointing to your site and the value of those links. However, in this case, you can only download the first 1000 results.

In terms of news, in Google, you can submit your news site for review and its sitemap for Google to spider. Bing does not allow this but you can submit your news site for consideration by emailing regularly at bns@microsoft.com. You also have to ensure that you have an RSS feed for content.

On Google, you can submit your ecommerce feeds for free but Bing offers paid only submissions. This makes the concept more attractive on Google but the Bing casback is finishing in July so it’s too early to say what happens next.

Bing does offer other features that Google doesn’t. This makes it harder to decide which is better but you can be the judge of that.

Bing allows social sharing for results via search results. You can use other people’s data for faster progress when searching. The system is integrated into Facebook, Twitter and Email. It also offers document preview, similar to Ask.com’s system, allowing you to decide whether it is the document you wish to download.

One other feature of Bing is that it allows you to block previews of your page by adding the following line: <meta, content=nopreview> or you may add x-robots-tag:nopreview to your robots.txt file to block the preview for all pages.

It may seem complicated, but Bing is picking up the pace and is gradually rising up to the tiers of Yahoo, Ask.com and now, Google. Microsoft’s venture into this medium might prove fruitful in the years to come but right now, people seem to trust Google more. Indeed, it covers more sources than Bing does but for your basic needs, Google provides ample service for the conventional searcher. Either way, both can provide the services you need. It all comes down to who provides better sources. For now, it’s a race against the result pages and only you can determine which is better.

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