Subscribing… Blogs… Feeds… What does it all mean?
Some of you are probably already confused. What is iGoogle? How do you subscribe to a blog? What does “subscribing” to a blog actually mean? Basically, when you subscribe to a blog, any new articles the author writes automatically come to you. You don’t have to visit the actual site to see if there’s anything new to read. iGoogle, and also Google Reader are free and easy-to-use services that let you see all the incoming news that you’ve subscribed to.
If this is all new to you, please watch the video RSS in Plain English over on YouTube. It’s less than four minutes long, but could save you hours of time if you still visit websites the old fashioned way.
Choose the news!
RSS feeds have revolutionized how I use the internet and get the news. First, I can choose topics that really interest me, and then I can check the content of each article without having to visit the actual site. In addition to this huge collection of Japan blogs, I have an equally long list of technology and internet marketing blogs that I also subscribe to.
This is important because it means the news I get is the news I want, not like on TV where you have to sit through stories of corruption and murder, or newspapers that only tell you what the editor thinks you want to know.
Subscribe to multimedia!
You don’t have to limit yourself to the written word. Various websites offer video, music, photos, or radio, and while some of these work differently to RSS feeds, that doesn’t mean you can’t subscribe to multimedia you enjoy. Yes, I’m telling you to turn that TV off, and start watching something you want to watch, not something the TV networks assume you like.
How to find the things you like
The easiest way to find online material that matches your interests is to follow recommendations from the websites you currently visit. For example, on this site, I have a list of other Japan blogs in the sidebar.
If this is something you feel like trying, I’m happy to offer more advice in the comments if you have any questions. In the meantime, let me welcome you to the information age!If you like, you can find me on Twitter at @nick_ramsay. I'd love to hear from you!