HMdb.org broadcasts additions to the database out to the Internet using the RSS protocol, which is compatible with all blog and news feed readers and subscription aggregators.
Adding our feed to your reader is easy. Simply click one of the icons to the right or type www.hmdb.org or http://www.hmdb.org/rss into the Add Subscription or Add Source feature of your reader.
If you don’t use a feed reader yet, you might want to start. Most of them are free.
What is a Feed Reader?
A feed reader is like a personal newspaper tailored to your interests. It is constantly updating itself, even when you are not signed on. You tell it what websites you want it to monitor and it shows you headlines and a bit of the story of anything that has changed since the last time you looked at your reader. Many readers will also suggest other websites based on the ones you have already subscribed to.
Think of a feed reader like your email inbox, but instead of incoming mail, you have incoming headlines with short summaries telling you what is new at your favorite websites. If the article looks interesting, a click brings you directly to that website so you can read the entire article or personal journal entry. In the case of this website, that “article” is the new marker’s page.
Most news and sports sites now broadcast feeds, as do blog, podcast, and video websites. Specialized websites like HMdb.org are also getting on the bandwagon.
Some feed readers are programs that you install on your computer. Others are web sites that provide feed reader service. If a website is broadcasting a feed, any reader will be able to pick up the feed. Thousands and thousands of feeds are available. News, sports, entertainment, journals, blogs, music, video. Some are available for a fee, others—like ours—are free. Initially you might want to register with a number of readers and check them all out until you find the one you like best.
Some excellent free feed readers are Rojo, Google’s Reader, and Bloglines. There are plenty of others. Microsoft’s Internet Explorer browser beginning with Version 7 has a bare-bones built-in reader. Click on the icon on its toolbar to activate it; check your feeds with the yellow star icon. The Firefox browser can also help you with feeds. Look for the same icon.
Instead of having to navigate to your favorite sites one by one, you can have your reader do that for you, building a digest of the latest articles—and markers—for you to browse through, all in one place.