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What's This XML Tag For?

The little orange xml tag that is popping up around the internet and on our site indicates the availability of an RSS/XML Newsfeed that you can subscribe to. An RSS file is basically a list of headlines or article titles or events encoded so that it can be easily used by another program or website. RSS is usually said to stand for "Really Simple Syndication" and it is relatively easy to implement and use. RSS is a form of XML (eXtensible Markup Language), which means that each piece of data in the list — a headline, a description of a story — is coded separately so that a program will know exactly what to do with it.

Programs that know what to do with RSS files are called "news aggregators" or "news readers." They let you read headlines from dozens or hundreds of news sites at one time. You simply plug in the addresses of the RSS files you want, such as the ones available via our site.

News aggregators have been proliferating lately. A nice web-based reader is called BlogLines. Bill Warters has a Bloglines Reading List here. Some popular desktop ones are Awasu (for Windows), Amphetadesk (for Windows, Linux, or Mac), Radio (for Windows or Mac), NetNewsWire (for Mac), KlipFolio, NewzCrawler (for Windows), and FeedReader (a bare-bones Estonian PC version). Four aggregators that require a bit more technical knowledge are Syndirella, Aggie, NewsGator, and SharpReader (all require Microsoft's .NET to be installed on your PC). A Java installation is required for nntp//rss, a program which lets you read RSS files in Outlook Express or any other newsgroup-reading software. Or if you'd like your RSS headlines in a news ticker, try wTicker (for Windows). For more info on available readers visit RSS Info.

Once you have one of these aggregators installed you can copy the URL attached to the little orange XML logos, and add it to your aggregator manually. This process will let you "subscribe" to a news feed, which will then always be available to you for review in your news reader, updated as changes occur. This subscription process (free) is a slightly different process for each aggregator, so look to the help files that come with it. If you want to read more about how RSS works and its use in Education, a good place to start is the article "Pssss... Have You Heard About RSS?" by Alan Levine from Maricopa Community College.

The Campus Conflict Resolution Resources website (the parent site of the Conflict Management in Higher Education Report) currently provides several distinct news feeds that you can add to your reader/aggregator and then monitor easily for changes and new items. The feeds are currently refreshed daily and will change whenever new items are added. For the technically-minded, we are using the RSS 1.0 standard. The available feeds include:

Feature Articles in the CMHER Report rss feed tag
View this online

Higher Ed ADR Events Calendar Listings rss feed tag
View this online

Higher Ed ADR Opportunities Calendar Listings rss feed tag
View this online

Enter your email address to receive the
Campus-adr Opportunities Feed daily via email!

Resources Recently Added to Site rss feed tag

Bill Warters' Tech-oriented Weblog rss feed tag
View this online

Campus-adr Podcast Feed rss feed tag

There are thousands of other XML newsfeeds available. You can find listings of them at services like Fagan Finder, Syndic8 and NewsIsFree if you catch the news reader bug.

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Page last updated 04/27/2004

The CMHER is a project of
Campus Conflict Resolution Resources
with support from a FIPSE grant from the US Department
of Education and initial seed money from the
Hewlett Foundation-funded CRInfo project.

Correspondence to CMHE Report c/o
Campus Conflict Resolution Resources Project
Department of Communication (Attn: Bill Warters)
Wayne State University
585 Manoogian Hall, Detroit, MI 48201.

Please send comments, bug reports, etc. to the Associate Editor.

© 2000-2005 William C. Warters & WSU, All rights reserved.