What is RSS?
RSS, or Really Simple Syndication, is an XML-based format that makes it possible to stay abreast of constantly changing information available from a wide variety of Web sites without actually having to visit any of them.
The RSS icon signals a link to web content that has been formatted for use by an RSS reader. Using an RSS reader or aggregator, you can subscribe to RSS feeds from news-related sources, blogs, databases and other Web sites. Each time a site is updated, changes are sent instantly to your RSS reader
RSS and the Libraries
RSS feeds allow you to receive updates whenever new content is added to a library database on a particular topic, or whenever a new issue of a journal is added to a library database. RSS works by sending automatic updates to an RSS feed reader rather than an email address; this allows you to stay on top of research in your field without constant searching and without cluttering up your inbox.
To receive RSS alerts, you will need two things: a feed reader and the URL for the RSS feed. Google Reader and My Yahoo! are two recommended web-based feed readers; you can also subscribe to RSS feeds through an email program like Outlook 2007 or Thunderbird if you prefer a desktop-based reader.
Once you have a feed reader, you will need to poulate it with the URLs of RSS feeds. The following database providers support RSS feeds:
You can use these databases to subscribe to new item feeds for topic searches, or to table of contents feeds for individual journals.