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Today I wanted to get more friendly with RSS feeds from my friends and family. What is RSS? RSS are data (news) feeds from websites that have those XML and/or RSS buttons. It's a way for you to subscribe to a webpage/blog/gallery and get updates.
There are several (likes dozens and dozens) of stand-alone RSS Readers out there. And plugins for applications. www.newsgator.com seems to be the most popular one, as it houses all of your feeds into one website you can login remotely and read.
Say you want to subscribe to my blog, but you don't want to hear about my computer or automotive exploits. You just want to subscribe to my Friend's and Family news/posts. Look at the Categories section here in my Blog. Notice the little (rss) next to it? :) You can subscribe to just certain Categories if you wish. All CommunityServer websites have this option.
Not ever having the time (or thought) over the last year or so, I tried the following three plugins for Outlook today:
BlogBot - http://www.blogbot.com/out/
Attensa - http://www.attensa.com/
RSS Popper - http://rsspopper.blogspot.com/
I don't like how Attensa (and I think BlogBot) runs background apps. I guess this is for DDE for those apps?
Well, RSS Popper gets away without a background app. :) I just rightclick any XML button/link in IE and click "Add to RSS Popper". Bam, it's added to my Outlook. It has a very low overhead. RSS Popper is also open-source (well, as soon as the guy figures how where to host it), as well as being .NET. Those are all pluses in my book as I have some ideas to extend RSS Popper (create an XSL file for these emails for some default formatting right now).
Tip: If you are connecting to an Exchange server, you might want to create a seperate PST (Personal Folder file) and configure RSS Popper to write to it. This way you won't fill up your Exchange account, and there has been issues with Attensa's plugin for Outlook for such things. I can't say about RSS Popper as I do not use my Exchange inbox (deliver everything locally for now, on my raid drives).
RSS Popper gets my vote.
So if you want to subscribe to my blog here, first install RSS Popper. Then look for the "RSS 2.0" or "Atom" links at the bottom left of my blog. Right-click on the link and click "Add to RSS Popper". You're done and will get updates to your Outlook. :)