Published Aug 11, 2005

Do you use a newsreader, an aggregator like Bloglines or My Yahoo!, or a syndicator like a Livejournal feed to read I’d like to understand how to put together a feed that meets your needs better while still including things I consider important, like the moblog and linkblog on this page. Tell me where you read in the comments and if you care about anything but the main post here.


I read through an LJ feed. (I think I created that feed, actually.) I don’t get anything except notifications that new entries like this one have gone up — I’m not sure what a moblog or linkblog is, but I don’t think your entries in those are posted to the feed…

Well, I guess I know they’re not in the feed, but I guess I was also wondering if that bothers you.

If you visit you’ll see a small photo on the upper right — that’s the moblog (mobile phone blog), and linkblog below that (blog consisting of links). Do you have any feeds that feature this kind of content?

Well, I’ve seen people include photos on a regular basis in their blog, and I’ve seen people with Movable Type add plugins for stuff like updatable link collections (some of them collaborative) and such…

I’ll bet it wouldn’t be TOO hard to change the code for such elements so that it updated the rss.txt, too…

Well, it’s not hard to update the index.rdf, but I’m concerned that I won’t do that well. For instance, I update the moblog about every 2-3 days; the blog, every 1-2 days; and the links, probably 3-5 times daily. How do I push that data out? What’s the most useful way? It’s a dilemma, and I’m not sure of the right answer.

I dunno, it seems like the obvious way to deal with it is just to create an entry in the feed, with appropriate title/link/body… For the linkblog, the link could go directly to the site you linked to, and the title and body could be the title and description given in the linkblog. The moblog is a little trickier, but I should think you could figure it out. If you gave the body an IMG element that had a fully-specified SRC (i.e. starting from http:// rather than using a site-relative path) people wouldn’t even need to follow a link to your site, to be able to see the entry.

My biggest worry is that I’ll be pushing, say, six updates a day to my rss feed but only 1/6 of my feed will change with each update. That seems user-unfriendly.

But the answer is clear — the easiest thing is to make my rss feed a PHP file that takes the latest-updated of all of the feeds of all of the parts of and publishes only the most recently-updated. Then each update will be unique.

I think that’s about #5 on my project list now. But, soon enough.