Take a deep breath, then read Shaan’s recent record length single sentence explanation of why you should use RSS feeds;
I still feel the same passion for the [his] blog and read about 300 feeds a day in my RSS feed reader which is something you could not do just browsing updated pages as the feed reader allows me to read the feeds a few times a day and scan for articles that interest me much like a newspaper as nobody really reads each article of the newspaper heck not many read newspapers today come to think of it.
It’s long but does explain the benefit of RSS versus normal web browsing. There’s a myriad of feed readers, both web based and local applications. Many web browsers and email clients will handle feeds but I prefer a separate local app. I use RSS Bandit (open source donor ware), as like it’s features, while Shaan has just switched from Google Reader (free on-line) to FeedDemon (also recently made free).
I’ve posted about how I use RSS Bandit before (see index). It’s currently allowing me to follow 1119 feeds, yes really that’s not a typo! Like Shaan I don’t read them all everyday but they allow me to monitor a massive volume of information which wouldn’t be possible any other way. While it may sound like information overload many only update infrequently.
The secret of RSS: You only get what’s new, meaning unread by you, and what you decide to follow.
As you collect feeds there’s is a tendency to try & read everything but it’s not necessary. For example I have about 20 Formula One feeds yet apart from race weekends only follow a couple closely. The others are there for review which only takes a few seconds except those weekends when the Formula One world bursts into life. I tend to have that approach with each topic and have a few “favourites” I read most days while still monitoring many others. If I’m away I tend to catch up with the favourites then mark the rest ”as read”.
Whatever reader you choose, use feeds!
To help with that I have have exported the approx 400 CAD related feeds I follow into the attached zip file*. It’s in OPML format which can be imported into most feed readers with one note of caution. The feeds are structured including categories used in my own reader. I’m not sure how other readers handle the import so stress if you have an existing list back it up before importing this file.
File Attachment: RobiNZ CAD Feeds.zip (17 KB)
If you are unsure about this another approach is to open the .OPML file in a text editor and just copy the feeds that interest you. If you look at each line:
<outline title="RobiNZ CAD Blog" xmlUrl="http://feeds.feedburner.com/RobinzBlog" type="rss" text="RobiNZ CAD Blog" htmlUrl="http://rcd.typepad.com/rcd/" description="" />
Outline title is a Blog, or other feed source, the xmlURL is the feed URL, the htmlURL is the website's URL and “text” the description. Just add the feed or site URL’s of interest to your reader. Happy Feed Reading!
* If your CAD/BIM Bog isn’t listed let me know as it means I haven’t discovered it’s feed yet!