Wednesday, August 8, 2012

rss feeds

I had a  conversation with Lisa Featherstone of JISC TechDis recently about RSS feeds and podcasts and the fact that although those of us who know about them and use them think the technology is the bees' knees, chances are your neighbour on the street doesn't understand it. They don't know how it can enrich their lives. How did we get to the point where the RSS logo is everywhere, but so few people use the technology? We didn't have that problem with email, did we?
Maybe it's to do with RSS readers. Browsers are a way into the web, we all know that, but even then, most people don't know their Firefoxes from their Googles (What's the difference? Isn't it all just Google?). They might double-click on IE to go to Google but to them, they've just gone to Google. The fact that there are different browsers is confusing. So adding RSS readers into the mix is just asking for trouble.

Then there's the whole debate about where RSS is going. Some of the big names are starting to share less : which is a worrying trend. When I was in a training session recently, teaching the teachers how to use RSS to grab content into Moodle, they loved the idea, and could also see how useful it would be in their daily lives.

So, talking about how useful RSS is, if you don't currently subscribe to James Clay's elearning stuff podcasts, why not? An example episode here starring myself and Dave Sugden: podcast #080

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