Product & Startup Builder

RSS is not just about News Reading

Added on by Chris Saad.
One of the principals under which we are developing Touchstone is that RSS is not just about news. This is why 'RSS News Readers', while a necessary and powerful way of using RSS to digest news, only represent a part of the overall RSS solution.

We are developing Touchstone with the understanding that sometimes RSS is about notifications. Notifications are more immediate, more compact and require a client-side alerts mechanism into which they can render.

Rich Zaide at has worked this out and has posted his: Taking RSS Beyond Headlines : Part One. I can't wait for part two!

We envisage a world whereby there isn't just 1 RSS icon on a page, but multiple RSS tags that let you subscribe via various levels of 'priority'. Maybe they don't even mention the word RSS. Do web pages mention HTML?

Imagine a forum, on each thread is a 'Subscribe with importance 1, 2, 3, 4 or 5'. You can now be alerted of new posts with a given importance bias that Touchstone can use to determine the right level of alert.

Update: Here's an example - of course the real version would be powered by JavaScript so as you rolled over the numbers they light up. Clicking would activate Touchstone and add the feed in with the appropriate iAM rank.

RSS is not just about news.