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There's an interesting new development called RSS Autodiscovery - the idea is that websites that have RSS feeds can advertise them in a standardised way by using a special <link> element. It's been implemented by several WebLogs, typically by providing a bookmarklet that attempts to find the RSS feed for the site you are browsing and then adding that RSS feed to your weblog setup.

See the DMoz category for more information including a list of tools that implement this.

This can be easily implemented by TWiki in templates (or using HTTP_EQUIV_ON_VIEW in TWikiPreferences).

  • Digression: It would be good to take the opportunity to modularise the TWiki templates a bit further, to ensure that there is only one copy of the <head> element - this would also simplify changing logos, using CSS, etc. Although RSS autodiscovery is most relevant to the view template, it should also be available in others for consistency.

I have now implemented this at http://donkin.org/, do a View Source to see the results. I just added the following to the <head> element in view.tmpl:

 <link rel="alternate" type="application/rss+xml" title="RSS Feed"
       href="%SCRIPTURL%/view%SCRIPTSUFFIX%/%WEB%/WebRss?skin=rss&amp;contenttype=text/xml" />

I also had to copy across WebRss and WebRssBase, and view.rss.tmpl from twiki.org. Since the latter is not publicly available, here it is in case anyone else wants to experiment:

<?xml version="1.0" encoding="iso-8859-1"?>
<rdf:RDF xmlns:rdf="http://www.w3.org/1999/02/22-rdf-syntax-ns#"          xmlns:xlink="http://www.w3.org/1999/xlink" xmlns="http://purl.org/rss/1.0/" xmlns:dc="http://purl.org/dc/elements/1.1/" xmlns:wiki="http://purl.org/rss/1.0/modules/wiki/" >

Note that this template file must have the <rdf:RDF> element all on one line for some reason - without this, the TWiki code seems to mess up the < at the beginning of this line.

-- RichardDonkin - 16 Jun 2002

Interesting. I just added it to the HTTP_EQUIV_ON_VIEW setting in TWikiPreferences here at TWiki.org. Could you try if it works?

BTW, the view.rss.tmpl template needed for the feed is attached to WikiRssExtension, a little bit hidden. What is needed is a Plugins.WebRssAddOn package.

-- PeterThoeny - 18 Jun 2002

The View Source on TWiki.org looks OK - I don't use any of the tools that implement RSS autodiscovery, though, so can't test it. If there are any users of RadioUserland (or other packages listed in dmoz link above), have a go at this and post the results here. I'm a bit unsure about the content type passed in the TWiki URL - presumably this should match the MIME type specified in the <link> tag...

I should have thought of that variable, much easier than customising templates!

It would be good to have an addon package for this to make it easier to set up - but it might be best to just include it in the core TWiki since it is only a couple of topics and a template file, and RSS is a core feature of most WebLogs these days (which are competitors to TWiki in some ways).

-- RichardDonkin - 19 Jun 2002

Interestingly, http://syndic8.com has picked up my http://donkin.org site's RSS feed without my submitting it - assuming nobody else did this, it must have been through RSS autodiscovery... So this looks like a good way of increasing visibility of TWiki sites in the world of WebLogs.

-- RichardDonkin - 24 Jul 2002

I noticed your site also at Synic8. A minor problem is that the syndicated site name is just "TWiki.Main" for TWiki.org and donkin.org. Probably better to change that to something like "TWiki.org Main web" and "Donkin.org Main web".

-- PeterThoeny - 26 Jul 2002

Now fixed, by editing http://donkin.org/bin/view/Main/WebRss to read as follows - Syndic8.com should pick this up in the next day or so:

<channel rdf:about="%SCRIPTURL%/view%SCRIPTSUFFIX%/%WEB%">
  <description>Richard Donkin's personal TWiki web site - various topics including newsgroup RSS feeds and anti-spam tools.</description>

I only really use the Main web on my site, otherwise I would have said 'Donkin.org - Main web'.

It would be good to make the same change to the WebRss pages on TWiki.org - I'll do this if you like, let me know.

  • Yes, please do (probably should also be documented in the relevant topic in Codev). -- PeterThoeny - 27 Jul 2002

-- RichardDonkin - 26 Jul 2002

It turns out that someone submitted my site to Syndic8... So it wasn't a win for RSSAutoDiscovery after all.

-- RichardDonkin - 27 Jul 2002

Interesting feature of MozillaBrowser 1.1 (and maybe other versions) - it puts up a Navigation Toolbar automatically when browsing sites with RSSAutoDiscovery. You can use this toolbar to get to an Other Versions -> RSS Feed option.

-- RichardDonkin - 28 Aug 2002

the line:    (More options in WebSearch) in WebTopicViewTemplete may need to: &nbsp;&nbsp; (More options in WebSearch) It is preventing a DOM load. This precents use of RSS info for other uses.

Why is there no close tag for channel?


-- JohnCoe - 28 Mar 2004

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Topic revision: r15 - 2006-01-24 - PeterThoeny
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