What is all this about podcasts, blogs and RSS, anyway?

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If you are not yet using bloging and podcasting don't feel alone. Many of us are just learning what it is all about. It seems the under thirty crowd is up on it and us old folk are just beginning to use it. It is quite simple to use but it requires a client, called an aggregater, and you will have to type in a URL (web address) at least once.

First a brief explanation of what it is. With HTML (web pages) you click to request that content be delivered to your web browser. RSS (Real Simple Syndication) allows you to subscribe to a channel and then your client uses HTTP (the web) to check at regular intervals to see if content has been added to that channel. A blog is a channel of HTML articles and a podcast is a channel of audio or video files. Apples I-Tunes is an aggregater that subscribes to podcasts. Moxilla Firefox uses Live Bookmarks or an extension, Wizz RSS, to look at blogs or podcasts. There are other News clients that are capable of handling either or both of these types of channel.

So basically you need to install a client and then subscribe to the channels you are interested in. There are some mechanisms for subscribing but it often means selecting to "Add a Channel" and then typing in a URL. The other mechanisms are not standardized yet and while many of them are implemented in the NDOTFA and Bonanzaville Jam feeds each client handles them differently.

When you are ready to start adding URLs this page contains cut and paste links to our feeds.

So here are links to some aggregaters you could use along with some instructions to get you started.


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