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RSS @ Olin College


Olin is pleased to offer RSS feeds through This document will provide you with an introduction to RSS, software requirements for using RSS, how Olin Feeds ( works, and directions on subscribing to an Olin RSS feed.

What is RSS?

RSS stands for Really Simple Syndication. The following excerpt from Wikipedia describes RSS in action: Users of RSS content use programs called feed 'readers' or 'aggregators': the user 'subscribes' to a feed by supplying to their reader a link to the feed; the reader can then check the user's subscribed feeds to see if any of those feeds have new content since the last time it checked, and if so, retrieve that content and present it to the user. In other words, your reader acts as your designated web surfer. Rather than having to check back frequently on a Web site for new content, your reader checks for new content and lets you know about it! What do I need in terms of Software? In order to properly utilize RSS, you need appropriate news aggregator to read an RSS feed. Fortunately, newer browsers have begun to integrate RSS reader functionality into their software package. The following Web browsers contain built-in RSS functionality: • Internet Explorer 7 • Mozilla Firefox 2 • Opera 9 Additionally, there are client-based news aggregators available. Examples include: • Thunderbird • FeedReader Additionally, web-based news aggregators are available, such as My Yahoo! ( This document will cover the subscription to Olin RSS feeds using Internet Explorer 7 and Mozilla Firefox 2. How Olin Feeds work? Olin Feeds is accessible from your Web browser at The home page lists all available feeds along with 2 links: (1) a Subscribe link (which we’ll cover shortly) and (2) a Preview link (which displays a formatted Web preview of an RSS feed).Information Technology Last Modified 3/23/09

How do I subscribe to a feed?

NOTE: Directions are provided for Internet Explorer and Firefox 2. Other Web browsers work in a similar function and other applications are available (see What do I need in terms of Software? section for more information).

Microsoft Internet Explorer 7

The latest version of IE contains support for RSS feeds. To subscribe to a feed: • Open IE and access • Once you find an RSS feed of interest, click on the subscribe link. • You will be taken to a preview page. If you have not subscribed to the feed, you will see the following: • Click on the Subscribe to this feed link. The following dialog box will appear: • Click Subscribe to add your feed to your Feeds list. • Repeat this process for any other Olin feeds you are interested in using.

Firefox 2

• Open Firefox and access • Once you find an RSS feed of interest, click on the subscribe link. • Firefox will display the following dialog box:Information Technology

• You can now choose to add your feed to a location that best suits you. NOTE: By default, the feed is added to Bookmarks Toolbar Folder (usually located below the Navigation Toolbar which contains your address bar and Web browsing buttons). To see the Bookmarks Toolbar, click on View  Toolbars  Bookmarks Toolbar. • Click OK when you are ready to subscribe.

What happens after I subscribe to a feed?

The subscribed feeds do the work with your news aggregator, updating your feed with the latest content.

How do I view my feeds?

Microsoft Internet Explorer 7

• Click on The Favorites Center button • Click on the Feeds button. • Select the feed you want to read. • Your subscribed content will be displayed along with direct links to the related Web page

Firefox 2

• Bookmarks Toolbar o Click on the feed on the toolbar to open a list of RSS items, then select the feed button. A dropdown list will display all related items. Select the item you wish to view and you will be directed to that particular Web page. • Bookmarks Menu: o Click on the Bookmarks menu, then browse to your RSS feed item. A secondary menu will appear with all the items. Select the item you wish to view and you will be directed to that particular Web page.