One Blog, Many Feeds

Cole Camplese has had some excellent posts recently thinking about the ability of RSS feeds to connect a campus publishing community. I have been doing a lot of experimentation in this area over the last year or so, and his posts here and here are really useful examinations of what might be possible as I delve into the questions of thinking through UMW Blogs as a CMS publishing platform, blogging service, and an eportfolio all at once.

Cole’s post about providing a selection of feeds to pick from on any given blog that might filter content by category or even provide feeds of your work from other services like, YouTube, Flickr, etc. was particularly intriguing to me. I have seen this done with categories on WordPress, but never using the RSS icon in the address bar. The challenge is to figure out how numerous feeds (not just to your WordPress categories or comments) be added easily? In real life it requires a hack to the template of the blog header, yet how many people are going to be able willing to hack their theme to do this? So, as Cole suggests, making it easy is the real trick. Well, given that I am using WordPress Multi-User, easy is my middle name, baby! There is a plugin Add RSS that does just this, which gives you fields for three feeds URIs to add to your header from any service you specifify, and if you need more you can hack the plugin (which I have), but I think it could easily be modified to automatically create more feed fields if you need them. You can see it in action on a regular WP 2.3.1 site at the OG bava or on WPMu at fakebava.


Long story short is that it works and it’s easy. Now I have to wrestle with Cole’s other concerns like repositories, which I can’t say I am nearly as excited about.

This entry was posted in plugins, WordPress, wordpress multi-user, wpmu and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

3 Responses to One Blog, Many Feeds

  1. At the risk of scooping Bill 😉 , this and what Cole describes is fairly straightforward in Drupal–you just use the Views and Views/RSS module to create feeds. I did discover recently, though, that it’s not as easy as I’d like to automatically discover the feeds available. I.e., Drupal needs a better way to add in elements to the it generates. Alas!

    It’s interesting, though, that this sort of thing is popping up in more and more discussions in different areas. I suspect that our recent conversation with Bill and D’Arcy touches on this, yes?. I think we’re hitting the limits of RSS. I’ve been mulling a blog post about this…the core idea of it is that RSS is designed for pushing _documents_ around, but we’ve now got so many documents being pushed around that we need something to organize and filter them. That’s not about the document per se, that’s about the data, and I don’t think RSS is optimally designed to handle that.

  2. Matt says:

    FYI, Jim, I’ve found that, since you performed this update, your blog headlines fail to load on my Firefox live bookmarks . . .

  3. Matt says:

    Oops — never mind. I had to create a new live bookmark, but it is now working.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.