February 21, 2016 Gareth

What is RSS – and why you should care

The great equaliser

Millions of people use the internet every day. It is a fantastic tool and its driven not by a small group of elites, but by millions of people just like you, with similar goals and interests.

The internet made it cheap and quick for anyone to establish their own property, or website, which was just as accessible as any other website. Think about that for a moment. It’s as easy to come to ServoSkull as it is to go to Google. That’s wildly different to the real world, where travel costs limit our ability to visit different places. The internet changes that. Because of the internet you can make connections with people anywhere, as long as they are interested in connecting with you.

As major companies have woken up to the commercial potential of the internet they have started making significant efforts to drive us to and through their own portals. This isn’t bad in and of itself. You may have found your way here via a search of some kind for example, but it does mean that we need to create and maintain tools which allow us to interact with each other directly, not just through these major portals.

That’s where RSS comes in.

What is RSS

RSS stands for Really Simple Syndication. Websites publish their content in a standard format. Using a common format allows RSS readers and aggregators to display content from any website alongside basic information about the article. In essence, RSS allows you to keep an eye on websites you are interested in providing you with an alert only when something new is published. This saves you time, huge amounts of time.

How does RSS work?

Websites which publish new content on a periodic basis often provide a summary of that new content in a standardised format; some publish entire articles in this format. The pages which present this standardised information, RSS feeds, are not very easy on the eye in their raw form but by using an RSS reader or aggregator you can display the information in a way you find convenient and easy to read.

Why should I care?

RSS allows you to connect directly with the people producing the content you’re interested in. Over time you can create a collection of sources which represent the people and companies you are most interested in hearing from. Using RSS you can easily keep track of hundreds of different websites and information sources and all for free.

RSS is ultimately about people connecting with one another, without having to use one of the major web portals as a platform. Facebook is an amazing tool, but its also important that you are able to hear from people without it.

Our mission

ServoSkull is the child of another idea, the GDMNW Blogdex. The blogdex was a directory of miniature wargaming blogs designed to help people find small infrequently updated websites which nonetheless produced first rate and interesting content.

Our goal is to develop new and more powerful tools to facilitate these person to person connections by helping people find new and interesting content from around the internet.

Gareth

A London-based board games developer, Gareth loves everything to do with games and family entertainment.

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