RSS is sprouting all over the Web, connecting weblogs and providing news feeds. Originally developed by Netscape in 1999, RSS (which can stand for RDF Site Summary, Rich Site Summary, or Really Simple Syndication) is an XML-based format that allows web developers to describe and syndicate web site content. Using RSS files allows developers to create a data feed that supplies headlines, links, and article summaries from a web site. Other sites can then incorporate them into their pages automatically. Although RSS is in widespread use, people struggle with its confusing and sometimes conflicting documentation and versions. Content Syndication with RSS is the first book to provide a comprehensive reference to the specifications and the tools that make syndication possible.Content Syndication with RSS offers webloggers, developers, and the programmers who support them a thorough explanation of syndication in general and RSS in particular. Written for web developers who want to offer XML-based feeds of their content, as well as developers who want to use the content that other people are syndicating, the book explores and explains metadata interpretation, different forms of content syndication, and the increasing use of web services in this field.This concise volume begins with an introduction to content syndication on the Internet: its purpose, limitations, and traditions, and answers the question of why would you consider "giving your content away" like this? Next, the book delves into the architecture of content syndication with an overview of the entire system, from content author to end user on another site. You'll follow the flow of data: content, referral data, publish-and-subscribe calls, with a detailed look at the protocols and standards possible at each step. Topics covered in the book include:
Creating XML syndication feeds with RSS 0.9x and 2.0
Beyond headlines: creating richer feeds with RSS 1.0 and RDF metadata
Using feeds to enrich a site or find information
Publish and subscribe: intelligent updating
News aggregators, such as Meerkat, Syndic8, and Newsisfree, and their web services
Alternative industry-centric standards
If you're interested in producing your own RSS feed, this step-by-step guide to implementation is the book you'll want in hand.
Chapter 1 Introduction
What Is Content Syndication?
A Short History
Why Syndicate Your Content?
Chapter 2 Content-Syndication Architecture
Information Flow and Other Metaphors
And at the Other End
Structuring the Feed Itself
Chapter 3 The Main Standards
Chapter 4 RSS 0.91 and 0.92 (Really Simple Syndication)
Creating RSS 0.9x Feeds
Once You Have Created Your Simple RSS Feed
Chapter 5 Richer Metadata and RDF
Metadata in RSS 0.9x
Resource Description Framework
RDF in XML
Chapter 6 RSS 1.0 (RDF Site Summary)
Walking Through an RSS 1.0 document
The Specification in Detail
Creating RSS 1.0 Feeds
Chapter 7 RSS 1.0 Modules
Chapter 8 RSS 2.0 (Simply Extensible)
The Specification in Detail
Module Support Within RSS 2.0
Producing RSS 2.0 with Blogging Tools
Chapter 9 Using Feeds
Using RSS Feeds Inside Another Site
Other Outputs and Selective Parsing
Chapter 10 Directories, Web Aggregators, and Desktop Readers
Ben Hammersley is an English emigre, living in Sweden, with his wife, three greyhounds, a few hundred deer, and a two-way satellite connection. For a day job, he writes for the British national press, appearing in The Times, The Guardian, and The Observer, but in his free time, he blogs excessively at www.benhammersley.com and runs the Lazyweb.org ideas site. As a member of the RSS 1.0 Working Group, he survived the Great Fork Summer, and as a journalist he has been accosted by the secret police of two countries. To this day, he doesn't know which was worse.
Our look is the result of reader comments, our own experimentation, and feedback from distribution channels. Distinctive covers complement our distinctive approach to technical topics, breathing personality and life into potentially dry subjects. The animal on the cover of Content Syndication with RSS is an American kestrel (Falco sparverius). Though it is also commonly known as a "sparrow hawk," because it occasionally eats sparrows and other small birds, this name does not accurately reflect the American kestrel's much more diverse diet. American kestrels also eat small mammals, insects, reptiles, and amphibians. In the summer, or in warmer climates, their diet consists primarily of insects.American kestrels are the smallest, most colorful, and most common falcons in North America. On average, they are 8.5 to 11 inches long, with a wingspan of 19 to 22 inches, and they weigh between 3.5 and 6 ounces. Though males and females are similar in size, they differ in their markings and coloration. Both sexes have reddishbrown backs and tails and two black stripes on their faces. Adult males have slateblue wings and are redder than females. Females are browner, with reddish wings and black bands on their tailsKestrels nest throughout North America in small cavities, such as tree holes, building eaves, or human-provided nesting boxes. The female lays between three and seven eggs, about half of which usually develop into healthy young. The off-white or pinkish eggs hatch after incubating for 28 to 30 days, and the young fledglings leave the nest 28 to 30 days later. While the female and young hatchlings nest, the male hunts and brings them food. Kestrels are quite noisy; their high-pitched call of excitement or alarm is a sharp "klee, klee, klee." Brian Sawyer was the production editor and copyeditor for Content Syndication with RSS. Colleen Gorman was the proofreader. Tatiana Apandi Diaz and Claire Cloutier provided quality control. Genevieve D'Entremont provided production support. Ellen Troutman Zaig wrote the index.Ellie Volckhausen designed the cover of this book, based on a series design by Edie Freedman. The cover image is a 19th-century engraving from the Dover Pictorial Archive. Emma Colby produced the cover layout with QuarkXPress 4.1 using Adobe's ITC Garamond font.David Futato designed the interior layout. This book was converted by Joe Wizda to FrameMaker 5.5.6 with a format conversion tool created by Erik Ray, Jason McIntosh, Neil Walls, and Mike Sierra that uses Perl and XML technologies. The text font is Linotype Birka; the heading font is Adobe Myriad Condensed; and the code font is LucasFont's TheSans Mono Condensed. The illustrations that appear in the book were produced by Robert Romano and Jessamyn Read using Macromedia FreeHand 9 and Adobe Photoshop 6. This colophon was written by Brian Sawyer.
Comments about O'Reilly Media Content Syndication with RSS:
Content syndication could be not easy for beginners: different dialects, complex RDF format, so many tools and so many mistake could be made while creating a feed.
This book is the response to many of those problems: it clearly explains the differences between various RSS dialects (0.91, 0.92, 1.0 and 2.0), their history, where you can find interesting feeds, how you can contribute to the quality of feed and so on.
The book even gently introduce the reader to some complex concepts as XML (if someone has never seen it, it could be confusing) and RDF (well, this one could be confusing even if you're used to!).
If you, or your company, are planning to publish your news, catalogues, services or whatever else, consider to use RSS as tool and consider to use this book as reference.