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What is RSS?

RSS usually stands for Really Simple Syndication, and it's a way for you to receive updates online from many different websites without having to manually go to the sites and check for updates. By using RSS feeds, you do not have to take the initiative to intermittently check your favorite sites for new content. Instead, RSS feeds bring the updates to you, as they happen, consolidating updates from all of your sites into one place — your RSS aggregator.

RSS aggregators
In order to receive an RSS feed, you need to have access to an RSS aggregator. An RSS aggregator (also called an "RSS reader") is a program that keeps track of and presents all of the RSS feeds to which you're subscribed. There are many aggregators to choose from, including many that you can use for free. Some are online as websites, some are dedicated software programs residing on your computer, and there are even aggregator built into many web browsers.

For more information on specific aggregators and how to get them, consult RSS Compendium.

How to subscribe to feeds
Subscribing to a site's RSS feed is usually as simple as copying the feed's link into your RSS reader. Websites with feeds often announce their feeds with clickable orange buttons that say "RSS" or "XML", like this: RSS.

If you're ready to get started with RSS, the Understanding Science feed is here:

RSS http://www.understandingscience.org/us_rss.xml

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