RSS Feeds and Google Reader

RSS Feeds and Google Reader

I recently started using Google Reader to get quick updates on my favorite blogs and the activity of my Facebook friends all in one place. If you are new to the idea of subscribing to RSS feeds, here’s are some tips to help you get going.

  • Find out what an RSS feed is. If you’re not exactly sure what an RSS feed is, read the quick summary on Wikipedia.
  • Add Google Reader to your Google account. Just login at http://www.google.com/reader and you’re ready to go.
  • Put a “Subscribe” button up on your bookmarks toolbar in Firefox. That way, when you’re on a website that has an RSS feed to which you want to subscribe, you can just click the button on your toolbar to add it to Google Reader.  To get the button, at the upper right of the Google Reader page, click Settings > Reader Settings > Goodies, then scroll to the bottom of the page. Drag the yellow “Subscribe…” button up to your bookmarks toolbar.
  • Start subscribing to RSS feeds. Most every blog and news site has an RSS feed behind it. Go visit a favorite blog or news site and click that “Subscribe…” button you put on your toolbar. You’ll be taken back to Google Reader where you’ll be given the option of subscribing to the feed.
  • Subscribe to your Facebook feeds. There’s an RSS feed for the notifications you receive on Facebook, your friends’ posts, their notes, and their status updates. This web page will tell you how to find the URL for each.
  • Keep on subscribing. Blogs and news organizations aren’t the only sites with RSS feeds. If you have friends that use StumbleUpon, Delicious, Twitter, Flickr, you name it, you can subscribe to feeds of their activity, too. If you’re not sure if a site has an RSS feed, click the “Subscribe” button anyway and see if one is found. The worst you’ll get is an “Oops. Can’t find a feed” message.
  • Put Google Reader on a sidebar in Firefox. You won’t even need an add-on to do it. Just add a new bookmark on your bookmarks toolbar that leads to http://www.google.com/reader/i and put a check beside the option to “Load this bookmark in the sidebar.” That’s the address of Google Reader for mobile devices, so it will give you a trimmed down view of your feeds.  Clicking the button you added will display it in a narrow column on the left side of Firefox.

Comments 2 comments

kksonakiya profile image

kksonakiya 5 years ago from Gwalior

I use feedreader for my feeds need. It is much less distracting and quick than Google Reader.


mikefclark profile image

mikefclark 5 years ago from St. Augustine, FL Author

Feedreader looks good if you want to install a program for viewing your feeds. What I like about Google Reader is that I can access it through any web browser or my iPhone via the MobileRSS app. I also like having the easy-to-use "subscribe" button on my browser toolbar so I don't need to visit Google Reader to add a new feed to my subscription list.

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