If you want to keep up with this blog but donâ€™t want to have to remember to check back on a regular basis, one option available to you is the RSS feed.
RSS (Really Simple Syndication) is a family of Web feed formats used to publish frequently updated content such as blog entries, news headlines or podcasts. RSS makes it possible for people to keep up with their favorite web sites in an automated manner that’s easier than checking them manually.
To take advantage of this technology, you’ll need a feed reader. The software is either web-based, which has the benefit of being able to be accessed anywhere in a browser, or client software, which arguably has more features. Google Reader and Bloglines are two of the most popular web-based options, and on the client side, RSS support is built into Microsoft Outlook 2007, Internet Explorer 7, and Mozilla Thunderbird, to name but a few.
The technology lends itself well to the typical email software layout, as blog posts or articles appear in feed reader software much like an email — the sender is the site itself, the subject is the headline, and the message is the body of the article.
I personally use Google Reader to read my favourite blogs. It features typical Google simplicity and an interface very similar to Gmail. I have a feeling, however, that RSS is really going to take off in the mainstream now that it is in Microsoft Office, in Outlook 2007. Up until this point, you needed one of several plugins to read RSS feeds in Outlook 2003. In 2007, the technology is baked right in.