Garrett Mills

Blog

An RSS Manifesto

More than a convenience, RSS is good for the web.

This blog is available via RSS, Atom, or JSON syndication.

For the uninitiated, RSS/Atom/JSON feeds make the content of a website available in a standard format. This allows you to consume the blog's content in whatever feed reader you prefer, rather than visiting the site directly.

RSS & Atom are standard feed formats based on XML. RSS is by far the most popular. JSON feed is a somewhat less popular syndication format based on JSON.

While RSS is no longer a "mainstream" format for consuming works on the internet, it still has a thriving community of dedicated fans.

You might be surprised to learn that RSS feeds are still everywhere. Nearly every news/blog-style website will have an RSS feed out-of-the box. Everything from The New York Times to NASA to every single podcast can be subscribed to via RSS.

More than a convenience, RSS is good for the web. It provides a standard format for programmatically fetching content from a disparate collection of websites, is (nearly) always available.

From a user's perspective, it allows us (as consumers) to choose what content we subscribe to and receive timely updates without relying on an algorithm. Plus, since RSS is a pure HTML format, it is often better from a user-privacy standpoint than visiting websites directly.

Finally, RSS promotes platform diversity by enabling small authors & creators to publish their works online in a standard, approachable format without needing a larger platform to reach their subscribers.

If you couldn't tell, I ❤️ open syndication, and I think it's really important to continue making these feeds available to users.

To that end, I'm trying to collect a list of independent RSS feeds that I enjoy:

Garrett's RSS List

This list is also available in the standard OPML format.

Dev Blogs

Garrett Mills (shameless plug)

Industry & Culture

Misc Nerd Shit

News

Space

Tech Blogs

Web Comics