RSS is like having a subscription newspaper delivered to your house. But the newspaper is our news, the newspaper boy is a small program called an RSS Feed Reader (or a bookmark in your web browser) and your front porch is actually your computer. That’s basically it in a nutshell.
The letters, “R-S-S,” originally stood for, “Rich Site Summary.” It was first offered by Netscape in 1999 and then abandoned in 2001. From what we’ve come to understand, another company called UserLand Software then created an RSS software program. UserLand held that the initials meant, “Really Simple Syndication.”
In other corners of the web, “R-S-S,” was also intended to stand for, “RDF Site Summary.” But no matter what “R-S-S” stands for or who, “invented,” it, RSS means immediate information access.
When we have news or information we add a corresponding headline and description of that item to an RSS/XML Feed file on our web server. The file is written in what is called “XML,” which stands for “Extensible Markup Language.” It is a “language” or “code” that defines a set of rules for encoding documents in a format that is both human-readable and machine-readable.
The XML file then provides that headline and description to computers that have subscribed via RSS Feed Readers, to web browsers having subscribed to our RSS feed and to web-based RSS Readers when the Feed URL is pasted in.
There are three options: If you already use a Feed Reader, follow the steps it requires. In the alternative use any of the Free Readers available on the Internet, including web-based Feed Readers (such as Feed Bucket which has been around for awhile). And lastly, if your browser supports RSS subscription then atop any page of our web site you can click the link “RSS/XML” and you will be automatically subscribed or instructed on subscribing. (We’ve noticed that older browsers can often see the formatted news feed while newer browsers, seeing the raw XML data, may need an add-on.)
If you are prompted for a Feed URL (the location of the XML file mentioned above), then copy and paste in this: http://www.thelighthousepress.com/lighthousefeed.xml.
Feed Readers and our RSS feed are free.