Tuesday, September 30, 2003

RSS = NQSSS, Part 2 

(Really Simple Syndication = Not Quite So Simple Syndication)

More on the Adventures of Blog Syndication

When I last wrote on this topic a couple of days ago (see RSS = NQSSS, Part 1) I had managed to create my .rss text file and upload it to my server. I used a validator to make sure that my coding was good. I also placed an icon linking to my .rss file in the left column of this blog. So far, so good.

Today I decided to change the RSS icon in the left margin. This made no difference other than a visual one. The new logo (I got it from FeedValidator.org) proclaims that my .rss file has been successfully validated. Somehow I felt this could be important, and even if it’s not…I like this icon better, anyhow.

My next dilemma was how to get my blog noticed (it didn’t seem useful to keep jumping up and down on street corners, waving my hands in the air and shouting out my blog address). After doing a little online research, I quickly found two places to submit/register) the URL of my .rss file for consideration: Aggregator.UserLand.Com (I had to become a member of their site first, which is free) and syndic8 (which I did not have to join).

After I submitted my .rss file to Aggregator.UserLand.Com, they confirmed that my file was correctly formatted, showed me what my “channel” looks like from their point of view (it looked like a nicely formatted version of my plain text .rss file), and told me that they would get back to me pending approval. I am not too certain what it takes to get their approval, but I guess I will find out. I am also not sure what this site is all about…but I will continue trying to figure that out by exploring it.

I feel as though I am entering a whole new parallel universe.

Syndic8 offered two ways of suggesting a site: a) type the URL for the http site where my blog can be found, or b) type the actual URL for the .rss file itself. Not knowing which was better (or correct), I did both. I guess I will find out eventually. Syndica8’s home page proclaims that it is “the place to come to find syndicated news feeds on a wide variety of topics.” When I have time, I will be reading more here to discover what they offer.

I visited two other sites today as well. The first one was NewsIsFree.com. I used their form to ask them to add my site. They said they would get back to me. I have a feeling they will decline because it looks as though their site only adds news- or politically-oriented blogs. However, while there, I found a very useful link to an RSS Primer for Publishers & Content Providers. I liked this primer not only for the information it provided, but also because their logo looks like an Evil Eye, which was the topic for my blog yesterday. (See, everything in life just ties together?)

The next site I went to, Feedster, was easy to navigate and wanted both the URL to my .rss file, as well as the URL to my blog. They did not say that my site submission would be reviewed or anything; only that it would be indexed within the next 4 to six hours.

So, I didn’t get very much farther today…but I think that’s about all of the geeky-ness I (or my gentle readers) can handle for one blog entry. You’ll learn more when I do!

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