I was thinking the other day about the notion of RSS being dead, I’m still a big fan of RSS, and don’t imagine it going away anytime soon. So I started wondering how it might be used in ways I haven’t considered before, which lead me to Twitter, Facebook and Friendfeed.
With Twitter I found that you could subscribe to specific people’s tweets. (there’s an RSS button on the right side, under who they’re following) I threw these into a folder in Google Reader titled “Tweets”. This way I can isolate and read only one person’s tweets or skim through them all. Interestingly, you can subscribe to someone’s tweets without having to follow them. I’m not sure how quickly they update, so if you’re stuck on having to have the most up to the second feeds of tweets this might be too frustrating for you.
Then I wandered over to Facebook to see if I could subscribe to updates in Google Reader, but couldn’t find any easy way – and by that I mean I spent maybe two minutes poking around to no avail. There may very well be a way to subscribe to status updates in Facebook, if you know how please leave some details in the comments, otherwise I may do some research and see if I can come up with anything. Once I felt foiled by Facebook I realized there could be a way to get Facebook updates through FriendFeed.
So I headed over there and scrolled down to the bottom of the page, there it was: “Other ways to read this feed” which included RSS, Facebook & Google. It’s as if they were waiting for me to figure that out or something. I hit the Google feed but it took me to iGoogle, where I had already been importing FriendFeed, I wanted it to feed into GoogleReader so I hit the plain old orange RSS button, which gave me the option of subscribing in Google, and then either iGoolge or GoogleReader. Kapow! Works.
You could break the feeds down into a more granular level by using the friends list on the right. I had previously made a couple lists, but nothing too detailed or fancy. Now I’m mixing and matching to create a variety of friend lists so I can choose to skim through specific combinations of groups and/or people. FriendFeed lets you add a group or person to multiple friend lists, which allows even more flexibility in creating various specific lists.
Have any interesting or unusual used of RSS? I’d love to hear about it.