Mon. Feb. 2, 3-4 pm, DIRC
Create a mashup using RSS feeds
Nicole Hennig + Remlee Green
Did you know you can mix and blend information from different sources to automate the creation of an interesting web site using RSS feeds? All with easy-to-use tools?
For example, create your own custom bibliography in MIT's Worldcat, save a set of search results from one of our databases, and tag a set of web pages in your del.icio.us (or other social bookmarking account), then blend those into a single useful feed that can auto-populate a LibGuide, a Confluence wiki page, or any web page.
As new results are added to any of your sources, they will stream into the LibGuide you've made, which makes it easy to keep up to date!
Come learn how to do this, see examples, and get inspired at our hands-on workshop on Monday.
2. Sources of feeds
- Worldcat lists
- LibraryThing - in your profile, find the orange buttons for "recently added books," "your reviews," or "reviews of your books by others"
- delicious.com - every tag has its own feed
- CiteULike or Connotea
- MIT TechTV
- MIT World
- our news blog
- MIT news office feeds
- search results from PubMed - instructions
- Barton new book feeds
- theses by department from DSpace
For more feed ideas, see our RSS LibGuide.
5. Some ways we are using feeds
- Dewey Library home page (feeds from business + social science blog categories)
- Giving site news page (feed from "grants & gifts" blog category)
- Scholarly Communication news page (feed from "scholarly communication" blog category)
- Virtual Reference site (feeds from delicious.com)
- Recent additions to the collections (feeds from Barton new titles)
6. Ideas for mashups
- combine feeds from a Worldcat list you've created with everything you are bookmarking with a particular tag in del.icio.us
- combine the feeds from several excellent blogs on the same topic
- combine a saved Google news search for a keyword, and a saved Twitter search for the same keyword, into one feed for breaking news on that topic:
more ideas.... (discussion)
1. Everyone needs a LibGuides account. If you don't have one, Remlee will create a temporary one for this class.
2. Create a new LibGuide. Use "test" in the name and feel free to delete it later. Leave it in a minimized window for now.
3. Make a list of a few feeds you'd like to combine into one. Copy and paste the feeds into one document or email message to yourself, for ease of copying during the class.
If you need an idea for feeds to work with, choose 2 or more of our new book feeds from Barton.
(click orange icons to get the feed URLs)
4. First we'll try a simple way of displaying ONLY ONE feed.
In your LibGuide, click "add new box." Choose RSS box. Give it a name.
Click "add RSS feed" (NOT "edit text"). Paste one of your feed URLs
into the box. Try our news blog feed if you need a feed to use:
6. Choose how many titles you want to display and keep the default "in a popup." Ignore check boxes about the proxy server, we're not using the proxy in LibGuides. Save it and you'll see the feed contents in your guide. Now click "edit RSS feed" and go try the other option for showing the description below each item. Save it and see how it looks.
7. Now we'll learn a way to combine multiple feeds and control the look and feel of the output.
Log into our test account for Feed.Informer. (username: mitlib, password will be on the board)
8. Click "create new digest", paste in your feed URLs.
9. Digest settings: Give it a unique name with your name in it, so you can easily find it again. We will delete all of these later, this is just for testing today. Leave the defaults in the rest of the form except for "dupe filter." Set it to filter items with duplicate titles. Click "save changes."
10. Digest design: Select "html." Choose the "basic" template. Feel free to look at the other templates and see the live preview. When done playing, select "basic" again.
(Minimize the Feed.Informer window for now, we'll come back to it).
12. Open your Libguide. Add new box.
Use the Rich text box -(first one in the list) (NOT the RSS box)
Give your box a name and "create box." FInd your box on the page and click "add text."
Click "switch to the plain text editor."
The feed most likely won't show up in the editing mode. Hit "preview" to see your guide with the feed contents in it.
13. Now that your feed is visible, keep it in a separate window. Go back to Feed.Informer and click on "digest design."
We'll change a few settings, then reload your LibGuide preview window to see how it looks.
Try changing the HTML template to a different one.
If you are brave, try "edit template HTML manualy." (see if you can remove the data from the "basic" template code).
14. Go back to your LibGuide and reload the preview mode window to see your changes.
15. Compare how this feed looks to the simple one you created using the RSS box in LibGuides.
16. Take some time to experiment for a while, we'll come around to help.
17. (optional). If you have access to a Confluence wiki, open it and make a new page. Click "edit" and switch to the wiki markup. Use this code to display a feed in your wiki page:
(remove this feed URL:
... and paste your own in its place.
You can set the "max=" to the number of titles you want to show.
3. The ultimate Yahoo Pipes creation list - ReadWrite Web