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Changing the Way That You Look at the eBirdseed.com Blog!

{What follows contains technical information and instruction. If you are not a computer/Web geek it probably would behoove you to buy a couple of pocket protectors and try to bribe the local geek into helping you with this. It's not that this process is difficult or prolonged, but it does help if you are a true nerd. It also helps if you print this post out before you start. CapeCodAlan}

How do I explain this? There is a quick way to view the most recent posts on the eBirdseed blog (and other blogs for that matter). This mechanism is called RSS. ("RSS" is an acronym for: "RDF Site Summary", or "Rich Site Summary", or even better yet, "Really Simple Syndication".) Simply put, RSS offers quick access to article titles from RSS-enabled sites. In the bigger scheme of things, RSS allows not just easy access for the user, but also easy Web syndication. Alrighty then! Sounds like a lot of confusing words to me. Time for a couple of pictures!

The screen shot below is that of an active list of RSS "feeds" in Microsoft's browser, Internet Explorer.


And the next shot shows an RSS drop down menu in the Mozilla Firefox browser.

rss screen_firefox_Use this one.jpg

Ok... Hopefully that should give you The Big Picture regarding the convenience of RSS in different browsers. But how do we specifically make the eBirdseed blog jump through such hoops of convenience in Internet Explorer? Just how would we subscribe to such madness? Glad you asked! Simply go to www.ebirdseed.com/blog, and then scroll down towards the bottom of the screen. On the right you'll see the following box o' stuff:


Notice all the different access points. For this post, let's just click on "Subscribe to this blog's feed" and that will bring up the following:


And finally, that will bring you to the perfunctory "What Do You Want To Call The Beast" screen below... Name it appropriately (I always just go with the defaults) and click "Subscribe".


Congratulations, your efforts have been successful, as indicated by the screen shot below.


Make note of that little "star" icon. In IE, you can click on that star (located in the upper left corner of the browser window) to invoke your RSS Feed list, which now includes the eBirdseed blog!

Time for an "Efrem Zimbalist Jr. Epilogue Moment"... As the first two photos in this post show, different browsers handle RSS in different fashions. Internet Explorer offers a bare-bone RSS reader (the technical term is "RSS aggregator"). Firefox provides a much better (in my opinion) aggregator. And there are third-party aggregators out there as well. And let's not forget, Macs, Linux, and unrelenting updates... About the best we can do here is make you aware of RSS using the current Internet Explorer as a model.

See you by the digital feeders,


P.S. Did you know that Efrem Zimbalist Jr.'s dad was a world-famous violinist and composer, and his mother Alma Gluck was a well-known opera singer? See that... Read this blog and you learn about birds and boost your trivia IQ.
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