Saturday, March 19, 2011

RSS or How Do You Keep Up With All of This?

How do you keep up with all of this? That's a question I am often asked after giving a presentation or when I meet people at conferences. One of the ways I keep up and learn about new things is through Twitter. In his guest post Steven Anderson recently offered some great advice about using Twitter. The other way, in fact the primary way, that I keep up is through my RSS reader.

I am currently subscribed to 257 blogs and websites in my RSS reader. Those 257 sites account for more than 1,000 daily posts. If I had to visit each one of those sites individually I would never have time for anything else (like walking Morrison). So what is an RSS reader and how does it help me efficiently process 1,000 or more blog posts per day? Watch the Common Craft video below to find out.


Applications for Education
You don't have to be trying to publish 100+ blog posts a month in order to benefit from using an RSS reader. Even before I was blogging I was using an RSS reader. I started using an RSS reader just to keep up with news from the BBC, CNN, and Reuters. I found it much easier to have the news come to me than for me to go to the news.

If you have a favorite education periodical, like the School Library Journal, chances are they have a web presence that you can follow in RSS. If your students are doing research they can create a Google Alert and add it to their RSS readers to get updates each time new information about that topic appears on the web.