1) RSS Feed Readers
Why everyone doesn’t use these is a mystery indeed. You’ll never have to check a fav blog again to check for posts just let this tool do it for you. Looks like an email inbox—new posts are in bold; already read posts are not bold.
I subscribe to about 350 blogs and web sites and have them organized into categories. That may sound shocking and also sound like a I waste a lot of time reading kazillions of blog posts and such. But actually it saves me a lot of time and it’s quite enjoyable!!!
You can set up categories for your subscriptions and read them whenever. Some of the categories I’ve created I look through quite often and some may sit there for weeks. If I don’t have time I might just skip over lots of people’s posts.
As I go along though I’m cutting way back on how many categories I have since I got a bit carried away creating these. Some that I’m keeping are “Friends and Cross Posters” (already deleted “Friends that are Cross Dressers”), “.a Most Cool” and “Automata Artists”. When I started seeing category names like “People Who Wear Orange On Saturdays” I knew it was time to lose many of the categories I created.
Category Bloat aside, it’s so easy to use these readers!!! All you hafta do is when you see an interesting site just go to your reader and paste in the web address/URL. And as I’ve already mentioned it’s not just for keeping up with blog posts. Many sites that you might not think have RSS feeds actually do! For example Yahoo groups do.
In any case here are some grand things you can do with RSS feed readers:
* Subscribe to your favorite etsy and ebay shops – SCORE!
* Search through your subscribed blogs for interesting subjects. You can find out what other bloggers you like have shared about these things.
* Dump all the online never ending streaming stuff like twitter, myspace, facebook, friendfeed and such all in one place. You can sort these every which way.
* Get other stuff that’s updated daily or often like TV listings (if you watch such contraptions as TVs), hot travel deals from sites like Orbitz and Travelocity, new job postings from places like Monster and Dice, tides from tide.info (which is so handy for us coastal dwellers)– well you’re getting the idea now right!
AND if by some off chance a favorite site doesn’t have RSS then here is a tool that will make it so anyway! Create your own RSS at http://page2rss.com/ for any freakin site. Ha!
Look how easy it is to add a new site to my Google Reader which is just one of prolly a kazillion RSS readers out there.
I just was over at Donna Watson’s oh so inspiring blog entitled Layers (yes you might want to subscribe to hers– it ROCKS!)
and she was posting about a workshop she just taught part of was about other artists that inspire us. One of the artists she listed that inspire her got my full attention.
I *love* Geoffrey Gorman’s art SO much!!! So I subscribed to his blog right away. Here’s all I did . . .
Just clicked on the “Add a subscription” button on my Google Reader and pasted in his blog address. Then clicked the “Add” button. You can see below exactly how simple that is. : ) If you want to get a better look just click on the images to enlarge
Then Presto! His blog posts magically appears in my Reader and I click on the Feed Settings button and choose the “.a Most Cool” category. Now I’m all over that blog and can see his new creations as soon as he posts them. Hooray!
Each reader will surely look a little different but seriously! It’s simple simple simple.
Craigslist? Forget about it! Just go to the Craiglook site– it’s what Craigslist should be. Enough said. http://www.craiglook.com/ Oh except of course that it too has an RSS feed so you can be immediately notified if anyone lists a monkey skull for sale in your area.
A happy tool that shows when you’re hearted on etsy and now even shows if you are featured in the new etsy Treasury East (cuz etsy won’t tell ya!!!).
My shop is really lame right now with not much for sale so surely yours will look much better. Anyway, Craftopolis integrates with Google Analytics to show all that stuff too. If you don’t know what Google Analytics is, it’s also a really great online tool but I’m not getting into that now cuz I’m tired and am going to bed. Nighty night!