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Finding blogs and RSS feeds

I used the Google Blog Search to look for blogs on informal learning which is the topic of my Ed D .This was something I didn’t know existed so I was really pleased with the results . I use Google a lot and normally would have just done a general search but have got some good hits which I will need to investigate further.

As for RSS feeds I did get a bit confused at first – after reading Cheryl’s posts I tried search4rss.com but it didn’t seem to work – maybe it was having an off day! A search for RSS using Google led me to a good article about RSS feeds on Wikipedia http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/RSS which was interesting especially the article on the comparison of RSS feeds http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Comparison_of_feed_aggregators – there are so many!

From that list I chose  Blog Bridge  http://www.blogbridge.com/ – was attracted by the tag line ‘the ultimate info-junkie system’ as I would probably qualify as one of those! Installation was straightforward – I signed up for a few of their guides for edublogs etc. and then added a couple of guides of my own and added feeds from my existing favourite blogs. I think I will find this useful to organise all the blogs I already use and will save time rather than flicking through my favourites list. Now all I need is to find a craft blog with a knitting pattern on it to make the extra day a week I need to read everything!

I loved the idea of the Google in Plain English video animation – another one to show my students and it explained the concept of readers really well I thought.

I subscribed to Google Reader and added 5 feeds as requested but didn’t find the interface as good to work with or as intuitive as the Blog Bridge one. As soon as I got into the reader I was give a huge list of suggested feeds on all sorts of random topics and it took a while to work out how to get rid of it as it was distracting. The process of adding feeds was ok but I think I prefer Blog Bridge.

I did find though that as I was going through my Favourites adding things that if I clicked the RSS button on a site I could add it straight to Google Reader from the site so that will be an advantage rather than having to add it manually to Blog Bridge.However not all the sites I visit have the button – will have to go and check if I do on my personal blog? Most of the Blogger ones seem to but not some of the other brands – interesting!

Well in conclusion I feel I understand what RSS feeds are and the readers will be useful – have enjoyed these tasks and feel like I have got a lot out of them .They would have been completed so much faster if I had not just kept clicking on interesting things that I found on the internet while I was doing it though! Now off to look at the new foodie blogs I have been given in Blog Bridge!

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