This is an Old Blog. Part 1: RSS

Since I’m serious about starting bloggin again, there are a number of technical issues that need to be addressed.

RSS: If you are reading this as a feed, you may be a little irked that you are only getting a partial…

(this joke is for RSS viewers)

… feed. I hear your pain.

Back when I was actively working on the site, I didn’t care too much about my RSS feed. I set my own publishing schedule and if folks didn’t want to drop by and visit, then that’s their problem. Partial feeds were the default when I installed, and I never gave them a second look.

However, I recognize that the technology landscape has changed since I last thought about the blog architecture. “Wait a minute!”, you say. “You stopped blogging about 4 months ago — feed syndication hasn’t changed that much since then.” True. However, I haven’t thought much about blog technology since late 2003.

If you like to read blogs, but are totally lost right now, allow me to explain a cool technology that may change your life.

There are two ways to find out if something new has been posted to Trixie Update. The first way is to point your browser to and see if anything has changed since your last visit. This method fails miserably when a writer decides to shut down a blog (for, let’s say, about 4 months) and then starts it back up again. If you are a dedicated reader, then maybe you check back a few times or for a few weeks, but eventually you’ll come to believe that the blog is truly dead and stop visiting.

The second way to keep up with a blog is to get a personally notified when a new article is posted. This is accomplished using a syndication tool. Most every blog publishes a list of recent posts called a feed. You can get yourself a feed reader (I recommend Google Reader) and add a list of your favorite blogs to it. When a blog on your list is updated it shows up in your list. Now you don’t have to run around checking to see if your favorite blogs have been updated. Instead you’ll get an immediate notification when a new post (or Picture of the Day) is published.

I wanted to introduce this second option because I know a number of my readers aren’t familiar with feeds. Those are the dedicated folks who have been checking in over the last 4 months to see if anything has changed. To those folks, I thank you for continuing to check in, but I hope that you’ll check out Google Reader so that you can save some time should I take another hiatus.

Back to the folks who use RSS readers. I’ll fix the issue soon. We will have full feeds.

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6 Responses to This is an Old Blog. Part 1: RSS

  1. Gord says:

    Yay! Thanks, Ben – I’m one of the few who use the RSS feeds, but I do find that I check in directly on the website every month or so just to see if there’s anything new going on. I’m looking forward to the changes! 🙂

  2. Judy says:

    That’s how I knew you were back – I have you on a feed reader! It is a good, good thing.

  3. Christy says:

    Just wanted to add that I use Bloglines and it gave me the whole thing. I do get just a partial for some other blogs, but I got the whole post for yours.

  4. Tom N. says:

    Same here – I use Bloglines and I saw the entire thing there.

    Glad to see you’re back.

  5. benmac says:

    Hmmm.. I just assumed that the feed I was seeing through Google reader was what everyone was seeing. I sorta remember that MovableType publishes a few feeds and maybe they have different specs — but that’s a total guess on my part. This will bring me to my next post — time to get some blog software. This stuff is 3 years old.

  6. Justin Watt says:

    One word: WordPress.