With so many choices of tools and programs out there in the technology world, how as believers can we best use them to glorify God and reach people whether they are unbelievers or brothers and sisters in Christ? We are starting a new series here on Before The Cross called “Defining Technology” that will help introduce and teach different pieces of technology out there available to us and how best we can use them to glorify God. For this post, let’s talk about RSS Feeds.
So what are RSS Feeds? They are defined as Rich Site Summaries. Whether it’s for blog posts, news headlines, or other formats, RSS Feeds help take the post and show either the full or summarized text to the reader without including all other aspects of a website. Every site has them, for example, ours is located here. The way they work is that you subscribe to whatever feeds you would like, using whatever reader you prefer. There are plenty of free ones available like Google Reader or paid ones like Reeder for Mac.
Think of these like digital newspapers where you have complete control over the articles (RSS Feeds) that show up on there and are automatically updated for you as a new post gets published. There are even plenty of readers for your mobile device or tablet. So instead of constantly going through your bookmarks and searching through websites for latest posts, you can easily subscribe to the site’s RSS Feed and through your Reader, watch as they update and read your articles from there. Plus, you can see previous posts in the same place. Most readers also come equipped with sharing options, saving for later, and more.
As believers, how could we use this? Chances are, you are a reader. You don’t necessarily have to be tech savvy for this, but you read. Meaning that over time you have found some of your favorite sources to read, writers to follow, news articles that you find interest in, and updates from around the world to see what is going on with Christianity. Imagine having one localized reader where you can have all of your subscriptions (which are free) show up in one place as you read your “digital news” in the morning, afternoon, or evening to get all those updates. Not only will you not be distracted by other things on websites, it will save you time from searching through all your sources, one by one.
I personally use Reeder for Mac and have found their interface clean, simple, and really easy to use. Plus, I love all the sharing options it comes with. Although it does cost money for the initial purchase, there are no other additional costs with it and if you use it, I think it is well worth it. I would suggest if you are interested, try a free reader first as you get started with subscriptions to see if you like it. Again, you can subscribe to our RSS Feed by clicking here and copying the URL Address Bar to paste into your favorite reader, or you can use one of the options where it says Subscribe Now on the right after clicking on the link.
Ok, your turn. Do you have any questions about RSS Feeds? What is your favorite reader you use or favorite subscription you have? We’d love to hear from you!