Monday, January 08, 2007

RSS Usage at 2%

According to a recent article on Scientific, RSS (Real Simple Syndication) is used by only about 2% of the online community. That is a sobering thought.

RSS is probably the single most significant tool we can use as we construct our Personal Learning Environment (PLE) in an attempt to take control of our own learning. There is nothing else out there that allows us to read and monitor information as easily and efficiently as does RSS.

If you need to learn more about RSS, check out Will Richardson's RSS: A Quick Start Guide for Educators and Quentin D'Souza's RSS Ideas for Educators.

Just think what the other 98% are missing.


pk said...

I don't doubt the 2% figure but you mention that it's 'computer users' and the article says 'online consumers'. I'm only being pedantic because I don't know who Forrester are (their statistic) and wonder if it is just their customers from whom that statistic was generated.

But it's true. It took me a long time and I'm a web savvy (though nothing like a tech expert at all) heavy user. I still find it a bit daunting and I'm loathe to venture from bloglines which pretty well suits me fine. (I've had a quick squizz at a feed on firefox and it wasn't how I liked it and I recall using a google reader for about 5 mins once.

I really would like a reblog but that requires your own server ---- the reason I know I like it is because Matt Haughey from Metafilter made a video ---- suggesting to me that video explanations might make the technology a bit more accessible to other people too.

NYT are probably right (as are google/yahoo) in seeing the evolution of awareness starting with homepages on commercial sites.

But I get quite umm...muddled or whatever just reading about the mishmashing, recombining, republishing of feeds although I'm totally immersed in it all the time. It just kind of shoots over my head a bit (more because I'm more attracted to the results rather than the process: I think I probably fall in the majority group on this one as well).

I hope they are making html compulsory for 5 year olds (oh, and touch typing!). ;- P

Lorne Henkelman said...

I think PK, that you and I are coming from pretty much the same place with most of this stuff.

The key, I think, is to find those tools that one is comfortable with and then run with them. I too am a Bloglines user, simply because that is what I discovered first and got comfortable with....there are lots of other good readers out there.

While I think using an RSS reader is the most important first step is getting one's personal learning environment (PLE) organized, I would argue that the second most important tool to get familiar with would be a Start Page. I use Protopage but there again, lots of other very good ones to choose from. And, most of the Start Pages now come complete with RSS reader widgets.

For me, Start Pages and RSS readers have fundamentally changed the way I use the web.

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