Don McArthur passes along some huge news in the syndication world -- Microsoft filed for a patent today on the Windows RSS Platform, a common feed database and API that can be used by other applications to read, write and store RSS and Atom feeds: The web content syndication platform ... can be utilized to manage, organize and make available for consumption content that is acquired from the Internet. The platform can acquire and organize web content, and make such content available for consumption by many ... read more

Bloglines has fixed the glitch that was causing Workbench's Atom 1.0 feed to display incorrectly, as a feed preview demonstrates. I reported the bug to them in e-mail last week and was told they forwarded it to the "appropriate technical department." I never figured out any possible cause of the error, but the fix is another sign that Bloglines is a lot more actively maintained today than it was a year ago. ... read more

Whenever you talk about syndication, you have to deal with confusion regarding the multiple meanings of the term RSS. RSS refers to the format Really Simple Syndication, also known as RSS 2.0. RSS refers to the format RDF Site Summary, also known as RSS 1.0. RSS refers collectively to all syndication feeds, whether they're in RSS 1.0, RSS 2.0 or Atom format. I floated a proposal to the RSS-DEV Working Group last night to rename RSS 1.0 as RSS-RDF (RSS for the Resource Description Framework). I'm asking for trouble ... read more

In March, when I wanted to illustrate why web publishers should support the common feed icon, I put together a graphic showing the ways RSS and Atom feeds have been identified on the web. I just received another media request to use this graphic in a publication, so I'm releasing it under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution/Share Alike license. For publications that can't use a Creative Commons license, send requests in email. ... read more

Robert Sayre has created a Feed Autodiscovery reference that's growing more useful by the minute. He took the original document created by the RSS Advisory Board, placed it on a brand-new wiki, and is encouraging submissions from the public to cover autodiscovery for all syndication formats. One way people can help is to add software they use to the supporting products section if it supports feed autodiscovery. I like seeing a Creative Commons-licensed document I worked on put to use elsewhere, though over time ... read more

When Randy Charles Morin and I were trying to wrap up the RSS Autodiscovery specification, we removed references to Atom to avoid discord. Telling Atom publishers how to implement autodiscovery while they're working on their own spec seemed like a good way to spark a war between syndication formats worse than "Dick York vs. Dick Sargent" or "let the rabbit eat Trix." Naturally, our decision angered Atom developers. Sam Ruby: Push the reset button, and get a better attitude. I thought I had the right attitude. Even ... read more

The RSS Advisory Board has published a specification for RSS Autodiscovery, the most effective way to let readers know that your web site offers an RSS 1.0 or RSS 2.0 feed. (A similar effort's underway for Atom.) If you're using Microsoft Internet Explorer 7 or Mozilla Firefox 1.5 or higher, you might have noticed an orange icon on the right edge of the address bar when you load some pages. This icon indicates that the site offers a syndicated feed. You can click it to subscribe to the feed in the browser's ... read more