RSS stands for really simple syndication. It's an acronym encompassing various data formats (xml, atom, rss, rdf) used for providing users with frequently updated content. RSS also allows for content to be syndicated accross web sites. Just about everything on MicrobeWorld is RSS enabled, so if you want to subscribe to an audio podcast, video podcast, submissions to the resources category, an individual user's contributions, or even comments on a particular post, you can. Following are instructions on how to take advantage of this technology.
To subscribe to any of the podcasts, audio or video, on MicrobeWorld cick the iTunes icon or one of the other podcast buttons on the right under Subscribe to..." on the podcast's home page. This action will add the MicrobeWorld podcast to your list of favorite shows in your podcatcher/feedreader of choice. Once subscribed, you will be alerted to new episodes and they will automatically be downloaded as they become available. You can listen or watch the shows on your computer or on your MP3 player. If you don't have a podcatcher you will be invited to download one.
You can also use a regular RSS feed reader or an rss to email service to subscribe, but these will only alert you to the podcast's availability and will not download the enclosed audio or video file.
In order to subscribe to an RSS feed on MicrobeWorld you will need two things, an RSS reader or an RSS enabled web browser, such as Firefox or Internet Explorer, and the url/address of the RSS feed that you want to subscribe to.
The Firefox browser has an RSS feature called Live Bookmarks. When you see the universal symbol for RSS or a button that says "subscribe", click the link. A webpage will open with a list of the stories or content items within the feed. At the top of the page, Firefox gives you a drop down menu after the text "Subscribe to this feed using". Select "Live Bookmarks." Next a pop up window will appear asking you what you want to name your feed and where you want to save it in your Bookmarks section. Click Add. You are now subscribed. To see what content has been updated, click bookmarks and look for the folder with the RSS icon and the name of the feed.
Similar to Firefox, Apple's Safari browser allows you to subscribe to RSS feeds using bookmarks, but with the addition of the options to add podcast feeds to iTunes and/or RSS updates to Apple's Mail application. When you see the universal symbol for RSS or a button that says "subscribe", click the link. A webpage will open with a list of the stories or content items within the feed. In Safari the options to subscribe appear on the right under "Actions". Hint: If you subscribe using Mail, updates will appear in your inbox.
The latest iteration of Internet Explorer (IE7) now allows users to subscribe to RSS Feeds. When you see the universal symbol for RSS or a button that says "subscribe", click the link. A webpage will open with a list of the stories or content items within the feed. At the top of the page you can choose to subscribe with iGoogle, Google Reader or IE7. If you choose IE7 the feed will be stored in your "Favorites," represented by the gold star on the top left of the browser toolbar.
1.) Download a RSS reader (see resources below for some recommended options.)
2.) Locate the web address (url) of the RSS feed (XML file) that you wish to subscribe.3.) Install the feed reader on your computer.
4.) Insert the url of the news feed (there is usually an "add feed" button).
5.) Many of the news readers will allow you to set the interval that the software will look for a feed update others simply update daily.
6.) The information in the feed will be updated when the feed contains new content.
(Adapted from http://www.rss-specifications.com)
If you prefer automatic email alerts for new activity on MicrobeWorld there are several web-based services that allow you to enter your email address and the RSS feed you are interested in. These services will then send you an email (usually at a time interval of your choice) with the latest content. Here are a few sites/services you can use:
Web-based Feed Readers