Pburg Free

The blog for all who know and use the Phillipsburg Free Public Library and our Web Branch at www.pburglib.org

Monday, January 29, 2007

Blog, RSS, Aggregator, Why Do I Care?

Some of my favorite people and web sites now have blogs. Even Tien-Tien, the giant panda at the National Zoo, who kindly posed for me during a recent visit to DC. Short for "weblog", a blog is just a web site that is easy to update, where the brief news items (posts) are listed by date with the latest news first, and where you can comment as well as reading others' comments. We are hearing a lot about blogs in politics, as well as in business and just as a way to keep friends and relatives up to date on your family doings. And Baby Blogs are a whole new subgroup. Seems most every newborn has his or her own blog. As do many dogs and cats!

The other day my son asked me if I had an aggregator. I believe I said something intelligent, like "Huh?" But since we are both librarians, he sent me a link, and I looked it up. The latest meaning of "aggregator" is a way to subscribe to blogs that interest you, and keep your subscriptions neatly in one place. Then whenever YOU feel like it, you visit the aggregator web site, and there in a tidy list are all your favorite blogs. As you click on each blog, you automatically see its latest post. RSS is the software that makes these subscriptions possible. And it's all free. If you'd like to try it, you can get a free account at http://www.bloglines.com/ . Use your Copy and Paste function to tell Blog Lines the URLs of the blogs you want it to subscribe to and "aggregate" for you. No emails, no ads, no Spam.

If you would like to try it out, you can use the URLs of your favorite, fabulous Phillipsburg Library blogs: http://pburgfree.blogspot.com (our news blog), and http://pfplreaders.blogspot.com (our book-lovers blog). --Pat Lawson


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