I’m a big fan of RSS, ever since I first discovered it through Bloglines a few years ago. For such a simple bit of technology, though, it’s often hard to explain how it works to those that have never used it before.

Another problem for RSS n00bs is that of where you can kind good quality feeds on the topics you are interested in. Generally speaking, this is an organic process, you subscribe to a couple, which then link to others, which you then subscribe to, and so on…

Could this process be made simpler? I wondered to myself the other day. And lo! Feedbeans was born.

What the site does is this: it makes available small OPML files that can be imported into a feed reader, providing an instant list of subscriptions along subject lines. So far there are two available, on UK News and Knowledge Management. I’m hoping to get some more up over the next couple of days, any suggestions for feedbean topics, and the feeds to go into them, are gratefully received!

I’m also putting some information together about RSS and how it works. Again, this is in constant development, so any comments on that would be great. I need to get the Common Craft RSS video in there somewhere…

I’ve had a bit of feedback from a few folk, and one of the common suggestions is to open this up into a platform, so that people can create their own feedbeans and make them available for download by others. I have no idea how this could be done though, so if anyone has any ideas, please do get in touch!

One day I might reveal the clunking and annoying way I am currently going about creating these things, but for now I will try and retain some pride.

3 thoughts on “Feedbeans”

  1. You’d be doing the world an amazingly admirable service if you could find a way of explaining RSS. I’m a total slag for it and constantly want to evangelize but give up since it’s impossible to get my brain around explaining it…so win that medal for public service, try to explain and post!

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