Stop missing out

Are you eagerly checking for updates on Maker Expo by continually refreshing your browser? Maybe it’s because you can’t find an RSS subscription button to our blog. Or because you don’t even know what RSS or Atom are. Here is a quick guide to how you can tame the web, making it come to you.

RSS (Rich Site Summary, often called Really Simple Syndication) is a de-facto standard for subscribing to blogs. It has been succeeded by Atom, an Internet standard. However, RSS remains very popular. Web feeds enable you to be notified when a website posts a new article.

First, you need some software to help out. Some samples are Feedly on Android, Liferea on Linux, Safari on Mac, or Outlook on Windows. There are several web solutions. For an extensive list, see Wikipedia’s comparison of feed aggregators. The selection can be overwhelming, but the ones mentioned here are a good start if you aren’t already using a program that can manage feeds.

In your reader, add a feed. This is usually a button. It will ask for a URL (a web address); copy and paste: http://www.makerexpo.ca/feed/. If you navigate to that page in your browser, you’ll most likely see XML code. Don’t worry… This is something the feed reader software can understand. Once this is setup, you’ll get notified of each new blog post. Once read, it won’t notify you of the same article again.

Unfortunately, the details of individual software is too extensive for this post. Just search for a tutorial if you need ore details and it should probably be easy to find.

These tools and skills are not limited to Maker Expo! You can use it to subscribe to news articles, notification of new books, your favourite clubs, comics, and any other blogs. Look for the feed icon (an orange rectangle with white arcs, shown above). This will usually give you the link that you can paste into your feed reader.

Now, go forth and subscribe yourself to a few feeds of things that you’d like to learn more about.

-MB

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