Developing Feeds with RSS and Atom: Developer's Guide to Syndicating News and Blogs

Overview

Perhaps the most explosive technological trend over the past two years has been blogging. As a matter of fact, it's been reported that the number of blogs during that time has grown from 100,000 to 4.8 million-with no end to this growth in sight.What's the technology that makes blogging tick? The answer is RSS—a format that allows bloggers to offer XML-based feeds of their content. It's also the same technology that's incorporated into the websites of media outlets so they can offer material (headlines, links, ...

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Developing Feeds with RSS and Atom

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Overview

Perhaps the most explosive technological trend over the past two years has been blogging. As a matter of fact, it's been reported that the number of blogs during that time has grown from 100,000 to 4.8 million-with no end to this growth in sight.What's the technology that makes blogging tick? The answer is RSS—a format that allows bloggers to offer XML-based feeds of their content. It's also the same technology that's incorporated into the websites of media outlets so they can offer material (headlines, links, articles, etc.) syndicated by other sites.As the main technology behind this rapidly growing field of content syndication, RSS is constantly evolving to keep pace with worldwide demand. That's where Developing Feeds with RSS and Atom steps in. It provides bloggers, web developers, and programmers with a thorough explanation of syndication in general and the most popular technologies used to develop feeds.This book not only highlights all the new features of RSS 2.0-the most recent RSS specification-but also offers complete coverage of its close second in the XML-feed arena, Atom. The book has been exhaustively revised to explain:

  • metadata interpretation
  • the different forms of content syndication
  • the increasing use of web services
  • how to use popular RSS news aggregators on the market
After an introduction that examines Internet content syndication in general (its purpose, limitations, and traditions), this step-by-step guide tackles various RSS and Atom vocabularies, as well as techniques for applying syndication to problems beyond news feeds. Most importantly, it gives you a firm handle on how to create your own feeds, and consume or combine other feeds.If you're interested in producing your own content feed, Developing Feeds with RSS and Atom is the one book you'll want in hand.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780596008819
  • Publisher: O'Reilly Media, Incorporated
  • Publication date: 4/24/2005
  • Edition description: 1st Edition
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 272
  • Product dimensions: 7.04 (w) x 9.18 (h) x 0.67 (d)

Meet the Author

Ben Hammersley is a journalist, technologist, and broadcaster. As a foreign reporter, he has worked in Iran, Afghanistan, Burma, and Beirut. As a technologist he has written books for O'Reilly and others, built sites for the Guardian and the BBC, and consulted for the UK government. He is principal of Dangerous Precedent Ltd, and Associate Editor of the UK edition of Wired.

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Table of Contents

Preface;
Audience;
Assumptions This Book Makes;
How This Book Is Organized;
Conventions Used in This Book;
Using Code Examples;
Safari Enabled;
Comments and Questions;
Acknowledgments;
Chapter 1: Introduction;
1.1 What Are RSS and Atom for?;
1.2 A Short History of RSS and Atom;
1.3 Why Syndicate Your Content?;
1.4 Legal Implications;
Chapter 2: Using Feeds;
2.1 Web-Based Applications;
2.2 Desktop Applications;
2.3 Other Cunning Techniques;
2.4 Finding Feeds to Read;
Chapter 3: Feeds Without Programming;
3.1 From Email;
3.2 From a Search Engine;
3.3 From Online Stores;
Chapter 4: RSS 2.0;
4.1 Bringing Things Up to Date;
4.2 The Basic Structure;
4.3 Producing RSS 2.0 with Blogging Tools;
4.4 Introducing Modules;
4.5 Creating RSS 2.0 Feeds;
Chapter 5: RSS 1.0;
5.1 Metadata in RSS 2.0;
5.2 Resource Description Framework;
5.3 RDF in XML;
5.4 Introducing RSS 1.0;
5.5 The Specification in Detail;
5.6 Creating RSS 1.0 Feeds;
Chapter 6: RSS 1.0 Modules;
6.1 Module Status;
6.2 Support for Modules in Common Applications;
6.3 Other RSS 1.0 Modules;
Chapter 7: The Atom Syndication Format;
7.1 Introducing Atom;
7.2 The Atom Entry Document in Detail;
7.3 Producing Atom Feeds;
Chapter 8: Parsing and Using Feeds;
8.1 Important Issues;
8.2 JavaScript Display Parsers;
8.3 Parsing for Programming;
8.4 Using Regular Expressions;
8.5 Using XSLT;
8.6 Client-Side Inclusion;
8.7 Server-Side Inclusion;
Chapter 9: Feeds in the Wild;
9.1 Once You Have Created Your Simple RSS Feed;
9.2 Publish and Subscribe;
9.3 Rolling Your Own: LinkPimp PubSub;
9.4 LinkpimpClient.pl;
Chapter 10: Unconventional Feeds;
10.1 Apache Logfiles;
10.2 Code TODOs to RSS;
10.3 Daily Doonesbury;
10.4 Amazon.com Wishlist to RSS;
10.5 FedEx Parcel Tracker;
10.6 Google to RSS with SOAP;
10.7 Last-Modified Files;
10.8 Installed Perl Modules;
10.9 The W3C Validator to RSS;
10.10 Game Statistics to Excel;
10.11 Feeds by SMS;
10.12 Podcasting Weather Forecasts;
10.13 Having Amazon Produce Its Own RSS Feeds;
10.14 Cross-Poster for Movable Type;
Chapter 11: Developing New Modules;
11.1 Namespaces and Modules Within RSS 2.0 and Atom;
11.2 Case Study: mod_Book;
11.3 Extending Your Desktop Reader;
11.4 Introducing AmphetaDesk;
Appendix A: The XML You Need for RSS;
A.1 What Is XML?;
A.2 Anatomy of an XML Document;
A.3 Tools for Processing XML;
Appendix B: Useful Sites and Software;
B.1 Uber Resources;
B.2 Specification Documents;
B.3 Mailing Lists;
B.4 Validators;
B.5 Desktop Readers;
Colophon;

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 25, 2005

    decent book, miserable subject

    Blogs have become huge lately. And in related ways, so too has the idea of a parseable news feed. To try and enable all this, the book explains RSS and Atom. It's directed towards programmers working on a web site. It is an awkward book to read, as it describes the RSS versions 1 and 2. Unlike other standards or software packages, where a version 2 supersedes version 1, here the RSS versions compete with each other! Yes, they are similar. But not quite. It is this dissimilarity that will give you heartburn. Hammersley explains that in general, when you connect up to an RSS feed, you can't tell which version it supports. So you can to grunge your code to support both. Grr!! Worse, as he continues to explain, sometimes a newsfeed is not fully compliant with either version. Due to a combination of poor programming by that supplier and ambiguities in the interpretations of the RSS versions. Plus it gets 'better'. Some feeds are not even valid XML. Yuk! So you have to decide who liberal your parser should be. Analogous to the poorly formed HTML pages out there on the web, and the subsequent decisions by browsers as to how tolerant they should be of these. Hammersley has done a decent job explaining RSS. It's just a miserable subject to code.

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