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Beginning RSS and Atom Programming

ISBN: 978-0-7645-7916-5
775 pages
May 2005
Beginning RSS and Atom Programming (0764579169) cover image


RSS and Atom are specifications that give users the power to subscribe to information they want to receive and give content developers tools to provide continuous subscriptions to willing recipients in a spam-free setting. RSS and Atom are the technical power behind the growing millions of blogs on the Web. Blogs change the Web from a set of static pages or sites requiring programming expertise to update to an ever changing, constantly updated landscape that anyone can contribute to. RSS and Atom syndication provides users an easy way to track new information on as many Web sites as they want. This book offers you insight to understanding the issues facing the user community so you can meet users' needs by writing software and Web sites using RSS and Atom feeds.

Beginning with an introduction to all the current and coming versions of RSS and Atom, you'll go step by step through the process of producing, aggregating, and storing information feeds. When you're finished, you'll be able to produce client software and Web sites that create, manipulate, aggregate, and display information feeds effectively.

"This book is full of practical advice and tips for consuming, producing, and manipulating information feeds. I only wish I had a book like this when I started writing RSS Bandit." - Dare Obasanjo, RSS Bandit creator: http://www.rssbandit.org/

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Table of Contents


Foreword by Dare Obasanjo.

Foreword by Greg Reinacker.


Part I: Understanding the Issues and Taking Control.

Chapter 1: Managing the Flow of Information: A Crucial Skill.

Chapter 2: Where Did Information Feeds Start?

Chapter 3: The Content Provider Viewpoint.

Chapter 4: The Content Recipient Viewpoint.

Chapter 5: Storing, Retrieving, and Exporting Information.

Part II: The Technologies.

Chapter 6: Essentials of XML.

Chapter 7: Atom 0.3.

Chapter 8: RSS 0.91 and RSS 0.92.

Chapter 9: RSS 1.0.

Chapter 10: RSS 1.0 Modules.

Chapter 11: RDF: The Resource Description Framework.

Chapter 12: RSS 2.0: Really Simple Syndication.

Chapter 13: Looking Forward to Atom 1.0.

Part III: The Tools.

Chapter 14: Feed Production Using Blogging Tools.

Chapter 15: Aggregators and Similar Tools.

Chapter 16: Long-Term Storage of Information.

Chapter 17: Online Tools.

Chapter 18: Language-Specific Developer Tools.

Part IV: The Tasks.

Chapter 19: Systematic Overview.

Chapter 20: Modeling Feed Data.

Chapter 21: Storing Feed Data.

Chapter 22: Consuming Feeds.

Chapter 23: Parsing Feeds.

Chapter 24: Producing Feeds.

Chapter 25: Queries and Transformations.

Chapter 26: The Blogging Client.

Chapter 27: Building Your Own Planet.

Chapter 28: Building a Desktop Aggregator.

Chapter 29: Social Syndication.

Chapter 30: Additional Content.

Chapter 31: Loose Ends, Loosely Coupled.

Chapter 32: What Lies Ahead in Information Management.

Appendix A: Answers to Exercises.

Appendix B: Useful Online Resources.

Appendix C: Glossary.


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Author Information

Danny Ayers is a freelance developer, technical author, and consultant specializing in cutting-edge Web technologies. He has worked with XML since its early days and got drawn into RSS development around four years ago. He is an active member of the Atom Working Group, the Semantic Web Interest Group, and various other Web-related community groups and organizations. He has been a regular blogger for several years, generally posting on technical or feline issues. Originally from Tideswell in the north of England, he now lives in a village near Lucca in Northern Italy with his wife, Caroline, a dog, and a herd of cats.

Andrew Watt is an independent consultant and computer book author with an interest and expertise in various XML technologies. Currently, he is focusing primarily on the use of XML in Microsoft technologies. He is a Microsoft Most Valuable Professional for Microsoft InfoPath 2003.

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