Category Archives: RSS-ATOM

Syndication format

Liferea – My Favorite Linux Feed Reader in Ubuntu

Liferea is currently my favorite feed reader for Linux. It has a simple interface, supports tray docking and is easy to use compared to other alternatives.

Liferea supports subscription from RSS and ATOM feeds for my favorite blogs and news site. It gives me the flexibility by letting I manage my feeds individually, or grouping it using the folder feature.

Podcast and Enclosure Support
Another feature that I appreciate the most is the enclosure support, which is also used primarily in podcasting.
liferea screenshot

Liferea can manage your podcast subscription as easily as dedicated podcast application. All you need to do is to configure Liferea to automatically download enclosures and you can listen to your podcast using your favorite audio player, provided you configured Liferea to launch your favorite audio player in its preference of course.

Screen Scraper: Web to RSS

Finally, Lifearea has one feature that most feed reader lacks…it has website screen scraper feature that lets you subscribe updates from your favorite website that do not provide syndication feeds for some reason. Here’s the list of user-made scraper scripts that you can use together with Liferea to ease up your feed subscriptions.

For Ubuntu users, Liferea is available in your repository, you just need to use Synaptic Package manager to install Liferea to your computer.

Liferea official website can be reached at liferea.sourceforge.net

[tags]linux,liferea,feed reader, rss reader, atom, rss, syndication[/tags]

Planned Improvements on PHP FeedCreator-ppt (1.8.0)

Sorry for the delay caused by my busy study schedule.

Now I would like to outline the planned improvements for the next feedcreator-ppt release 1.8.0 :

  • Improve ATOM 1.0 support
  • Fix HTML encoded description feature in ATOM and RSS feeds
  • Add manual, documentations and more examples
  • Add function to change timezone and encodings easily
  • Add standard podcast support
  • Fix various bugs in PIE,RSS,ATOM feed format

The new release of Feedcreator-ppt (1.8.0) is expected to come out in end of February 2007. You can get the latest development release from Feedcreator SVN server

Any Suggestions?
If you have any suggestions, feature request or bugs, please report them at Feedcreator Tracker at Sourceforge or put a comment here.

When you do, please include pieces of code that produces the feed, the resulting xml file itself and the version of feedcreator you’ve tested against (1.7.2-ppt or SVN) for easy debugging.

I would like to thank KosherJava and various other individuals that has submitted bug reports to improve feedcreator. Thank you, and and have a great Christmas holiday.

[tags]feedcreator,rss,atom,xml,feed,feeds[/tags]

Shop smarter – Grab Coupons for Online Gift Shopping

I’m going to let you know previously untold secret: I’m a shop addict. I’ve became one ever since I learn how to do online transaction from a friend. Since then, I never missed an opportunities to grab whatever stuff that I want to be through the Internet, provided that it is well priced.

If you’re smart enough, you can even get lower prices when you’re shopping online. Some online stores has a feature called ‘Online Coupon codes‘ which when entered, will give you special discount for the things you buy online. These coupon codes are given away by retailers as a way to promote their products on the internet.

Where can I find These Coupons?
One such place that you can find coupon codes is from Ncnatural Coupon Resources, a daily updated directory of coupon codes. The website is organized in such way that users will be able to locate coupons quickly without much hassle.

For a geek like me, I find coupons from Amazon.com and Barnes & Noble are most interesting as I like to read a lot of books.

With Christmas just around the corner there will be a lot of shopping going on and I’m sure that you’ll save a lot on online shopping with these coupons :)

[tags]shop,e-commerce, online shopping, coupon, coupon codes,tips,amazon[/tags]

XSL Hacking for Photo Gallery

I’ve hacked XSL template for my photo gallery RSS feeds. Not much of a sight, but I’ve definitely learn a lot of things about XSLT transformation and its quirks, lol.

Well, now at least my Photo Gallery feeds is much more readable to an average human being. Oh, I’ve updated my gallery with several more photos for your viewing pleasure.

Here’s the source code of my XSL template, free for public use : RSS Photo Template

Yahoo Media RSS extension (mRSS) and Photo Galleries

I just realised that Yahoo Media RSS extension (mRSS) has enabled me to view my photo gallery in slide show in My Yahoo!.

This is because I’ve included Yahoo mRSS extension as part of my experimental Coppermine RSS/ATOM plugin.

You can see the screenshot of “My Yahoo!” here when it reacted on RSS feed that contain mRSS extension. The normal RSS/ATOM feed subscription is on the right, while the mRSS-enabled feed is in slideshow mode.

Other photo gallery that supports Yahoo mRSS is Flickr

You can get Yahoo Media RSS extension specifications here : http://search.yahoo.com/mrss/mrss

Microsoft release specs for Simple Sharing Extensions (SSE)

Microsoft has released Simple Sharing Extensions, a new extension to RSS which helps users to syncronise each others extension. Microsoft has release SSE specs under the Creative Commons License (Attribution-ShareAlike) 2.5 .

Microsoft claimed that it has modelled the SSE based on the structure of Lotus Notes, which denotes that Lotus Notes “notefile” is analogous to RSS ‘feeds;’ and Lotus Notes ‘notes’ could be analogous to RSS ‘items’.

Hope that this extension would extend the usefulness of RSS feeds just like other extensions like Yahoo mRSS and dublin core module do. I would also love that people would use the ATOM 1.0, functionality in much of their daily work, as I read the specs that there’s much potential to be exploited in the syndication format.

[Source]
Microsoft RSS SSE extension spec : http://msdn.microsoft.com/xml/rss/sse/

Using Feedcreator to generate ATOM 1.0 feeds

I’m going give out a tip on using feedcreator class library to ease up generating syndication feeds for your web project. As you might know, there are different kind of syndication format out there such as RSS 2.0, RSS 1.0, RSS0.91, ATOM0.3 and ATOM1.0. Each of the syndication format has its own markup (though RSS 0.91 and 2.0 are closely related), making generating feeds from scratch can be quite a chore for your project.

Feedcreator provides an easy way to create RSS and ATOM feeds from within PHP using ease to use classes. However, feedcreator has a couple of drawback :

  1. It does not support ATOM 1.0
  2. Doesn’t support Enclosure
  3. Can’t generate feeds on the fly

Though these drawbacks might not be as serious as I put in here, it is nice to have this features implemented on feedcreator. ATOM 1.0 is a new syndication format issued by IETF as a standard way to produce feeds, ATOM 1.0 has a nice features and more structured layout than the ever-inconsistent RSS feeds.

Though Enclosure tag is optional in RSS 2.0, the tag is significant for those who are into podcasting or photoblogging. Enclosure feature allows for the syndicated feed to not just serve text content, but also to package an enclosure (call it an attachment of some sort), as well. IIn the podcasting model, the RSS enclosure contains an audio file, which subscribers can listen to on their devices.

Generating feeds on the fly is one of the most requested feature of feedcreator. This allows feeds to be generated dynamically upon request as opposed to generating feed on certain event (such as posting new articles). Mambo and PhpGedView project uses modified Feedcreator to generate feeds on-the-fly.

I’ve published a modified version of Feedcreator (namely Feedcreator 1.7.2-ppt) that contains all of these enhancements (or hacks). Here’s a snippets on how to use the additional features :


/*

This demo is to illustrate how to use feedcreator
using outputFeed function, ATOM1.0 and enclosure
support.

Enclosure support is useful if you are into
podcasting or publishing photoblog.

the required parameter for enclosure is url, length
and type (as in MIME-type)

*/

< ? php
include ("include/feedcreator.class.php");

//define channel
$rss = new UniversalFeedCreator();
$rss->useCached();
$rss->title="Personal News Site";
$rss->description="daily news from me";
$rss->link="http://mydomain.net/";
$rss->syndicationURL="http://mydomain.net/$PHP_SELF";

//channel items/entries
$item = new FeedItem();
$item->title = "test berita pertama";
$item->link = "http://mydomain.net/news/somelinks.html";
$item->description = "hahaha aku berjaya!";
$item->source = "http://mydomain.net";
$item->author = "[email protected]";

//optional enclosure support
$item->enclosure = new EnclosureItem();
$item->enclosure->url='http://mydomain.net/news/picture.jpg';
$item->enclosure->length="65905";
$item->enclosure->type='image/jpeg';

$rss->addItem($item);

//Valid parameters are RSS0.91, RSS1.0, RSS2.0, PIE0.1 (deprecated),
// MBOX, OPML, ATOM, ATOM1.0, ATOM0.3, HTML, JS

$rss->outputFeed("ATOM1.0");
//$rss->saveFeed("ATOM1.0", "news/feed.xml");

?>

You can download the modified version of Feedcreator 1.7.2 from my server, the zip package contains the modified class library, GNU/LGPL license, some demo php file and a diff file against the plain vanilla Feedcreator 1.7.2 for curious people.

p/s : all of the modifications are written by me except outputFeed function which is written by Fabian Wolf.

Download :
Feedcreator 1.7.2-ppt (zip)

Feedcreator website : http://www.bitfolge.de/rsscreator-en.html

RSS2PDF – Free Online RSS and Atom to PDF Generator

I’ve discovered this website while on the internet, http://www.rss2pdf.com/. Like the title said, this website can turn any of your syndication feeds into pretty PDF documents. RSS2PDF also supports news feed auto-discovery making your life a little bit easier.

What can you do with RSS2PDF? Well for starters, the website itself has given some ideas to visitors on how to utilise them, such as creating comic PDF from any feed at Tapestry Comics, turn google news into pdf articles, and publish your blog feed into paper-based bulletin and transform your flickr photos in PDF style album. The choices are just limitless

Comparing Atom 1.0 and RSS 2.0

Came across this article which discusses about Atom 1.0 and RSS 2.0 features. I’m interested in this article because I also in the process of implementing/writing RSS/Atom feed plugin myself.

The document itself seems to bias on Atom 1.0 feed, and contain one factual error in which it states that Blogger publishing protocol is widely use with RSS, which is wrong. Blogger use Atom api as its publishing protocol.

Other than that, this document is great is you want to glance through the differences between RSS 2.0 and Atom 1.0 which is (becoming) an IETF standards-track RFC.

Read the article : RSS 2.0 and Atom1.0, Compared

Worth reading :
RSS 2.0 Specification
Atom 1.0 Syndication Format
What is RSS
Atom Wiki Page