Curated by: Luigi Canali De Rossi

Thursday, September 30, 2004

RSS Convergence - Next Stop The Enterprise

The announcement this week that Newsgator (an RSS news aggregator) and Six Apart (a blog/personal publishing systems provider) are developing plug-ins that enable the seamless integration of news items from the former into the MovableType (server-based) and TypePad (web-hosted) blog platforms of the latter is a great step forward. They have realised that there is a gap between aggregating news and re-publishing news and it is an early indicator of the convergence we will see in the whole RSS universe over the coming months.

If you regularly publish news related items to your blogsite, it's probable that you also use a news aggregator/reader to support your research efforts. The aggregator enables you to search, filter, find and select RSS based news items that you're interested in.

The aggregator provides you (typically) with the first few lines of the news item, with a link to the original item on the web. Once you've selected the items you wish to comment on from the aggregator, you might then visit the originating source for the full article by clicking on the link provided.

Having read the original item, you might then decide that it is indeed something you wish to comment on, or research further and the next logical step in the process is to bookmark it. You might bookmark it in your browser, or use one of the relatively new web-based bookmarking tools, such as or furl.

When the time comes to use that particular item, you will return to the bookmark, access the site and then copy the link into your blog posting and/or copy and paste the item into your posting, adding your commentary as appropriate.

Not really a seamless, integrated end-to-end process.

Recently, Bloglines, one of the more innovative (free, web-based) news aggregators realised that there might be an unfulfilled need to smooth out this process and introduced two new services for their subscribers, i.e. 'Clippings' and 'My Blog'.

Clippings allows you to select a specific news item and save into a folder for later retrieval. Furthermore, you can create as many folders as you like - and name those folders, enabling you to 'tag' items into groups.

My Blog is an extension of Clippings, in that it allows you to select specific items but rather than saving them into folders, you can save them directly into a Bloglines proprietary blog, allowing you to add your commentary then and there, or later.

These new features from Bloglines, by all accounts, have been very well received and has undoubtedly resulted in ongoing loyalty from existing subscribers and the recruitment of plenty of new users.

However, if you are using any other blogging software, you're still left with the task of transferring content from Bloglines to your own blog.

Although NewGator (primarily MS Outlook based) and Six Apart are very popular with independent publishers (unlike Bloglines, they do charge), they have both made it very clear that they are highly focused on the (potentially hugely lucrative) enterprise market.

This on-going convergence will soon offer the tools needed, in terms of compatibility with enterprise applications (such as MS Outlook), scaleability and security, to enable the NewsMaster to start operating successfully within the enterprise.

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posted by on Thursday, September 30 2004, updated on Tuesday, May 5 2015

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