Wow! I just realized that I have not yet talked about what an RSS reader is and how you can use them to save yourself a bunch of time. I help a lot of people with basic computer usage. Smart people that are incredibly busy, too busy in-fact to waste time figuring out the newest thing on the web. Maybe you are one of them? I try hard not bombard them them with all the newest stuff (kind of tough with my personality) but this is a time-saver I try to share with everyone.
If your eyes glaze-over any time someone starts talking tech, this post is for you. I am going to tell you about something that could be as important as email if you use the internet or world wide web much or if you would like to start using it more.
How many websites do you go back and visit more than once because they occasionally add new information? The neat thing about the web is that new information is always being added. The downside is that the new information you are interested in is probably spread all over the web. You could check each of your favorite sites everyday but since most of them do not add stuff on a regular basis, you would be wasting your time. Besides going to that many sites takes time. Luckily, there is an easier way.
Now there are websites that will pull together all of the new information from any site you are interested in, or any topic. You only have to go to one website and all the information is pulled together for you like a personalized newspaper. Now you only have to go to one web-site each day, week, whatever, and you are done. These sites also make it easy to keep track of what new information you have looked at and what you have not. So you do not have to check it every day and you do not have to worry about missing something.
This can save you a lot time too, if there is a topic that you need to stay up to date on – like industry news related to your job. One way to stay current is to get trade association journals, skim newspapers, or even do searches online. A better way is to subscribe to the online version of those journals, newspapers, and topic searches. All of these can be brought together into a single web-page customized just for you.
And the best part is that it is all free.
Free is great but how hard is it to set-up. Well…. It is just a little more difficult than setting up web-mail. If you had to get help setting up email, contact me. I will help you set it up and show you how to use it. If you set-up you own email account and are really starting to get this whole web thing, try going to Google Reader and signing up. If you are a Microsoft loyalist I hear you can use Internet Explorer 7 instead. Bloglines is also an ok option. Actually there are quite a few options out there. Basically, anything with the ability to subscribe to blogs, news, feeds, and/or RSS, is what you are looking for. If you need help picking one or setting it up let me know.