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Beijer Electronics, Inc. Syndication Feeds

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Available Feeds from Beijer Electronics, Inc.

What are Feeds, RSS, and ATOM?

Feeds are data formats used to make online information more accessible to users, websites and other devices. RSS and ATOM are two common types of feeds. The process of improving website accessibility via feeds is commonly referred to as web syndication. Feeds have a wide base of usage ranging from large organizations such as The New York Times or Wired to personal weblogs (or blogs). Feeds are simply a representation of online data they use for conveying information from headlines and links to complete stories, or even complete websites. By syndicating our site with feeds, we make it easy for you to get important information in an easy, accurate and timely manner.

What are feeds used for?

Feeds are most commonly used in news and weblogs. (A weblog, or more commonly "blog," is a journal, a running log of thoughts or commentary that an author, or "blogger," makes available for reading on a website.) For example, many online newspapers offer their recent articles in the form of a feed, which enables you to easily get the latest headlines and stories as they are being published.

How do I use a feed?

Feeds work similarly to email, but in a reverse fashion. Rather than us sending you information we think you want to know about, you select "opt into" a list of topics you are interested in. This may be new product releases, product updates, software releases, etc. Feeds enable you to choose what information you want to receive, whom you want to receive it from and how often you want to receive it, without the hassles of subscribing or unsubscribing to a email list. In fact, your email address is never used during the process and remains completely private.

In order to use a feed, you need a piece of software called a news aggregator (sometimes called a news reader). An aggregator pulls together (or aggregates) all the feeds you subscribe to into one place so you can easily read, print or search them. An aggregator is also responsible for monitoring your feeds and retrieving new information. Many different aggregators are available, each with different features. You may want to try out a few to decide what you like. Below is a partial list:

  • Firefox is a free cross-platform (standards-compliant) web browser with built-in RSS and ATOM capabilities via live bookmarks or extensions ( Such as the Sage or read4me extensions ).
  • Opera is a free cross-platform (standards-compliant) web browser with a built-in RSS and ATOM reader.
  • NewsGator provides many different feed services for windows or via an web interface.
  • Thunderbird is a free cross-platform email application with a built-in RSS and ATOM reader.
  • NetNewsWire is an easy-to-use RSS and ATOM news reader for Mac OS X.
  • Safari is the built in web browser for Mac OS X with a built-in RSS and ATOM reader.
  • For more aggregators try the RSS Compendium.

The best way to understand what feeds are and how you can use the technology for your own personal applications is to get an aggregator and give it a try. Many of the sites you visit frequently likely have news feeds. Often buttons labeled "XML", "ATOM", "RSS" or "RDF" provide a link to the feed. Many browsers (such as Firefox, Opera, Netscape, or Safari) offer Feed Detection, which automatically notifies you when there is a feed present for the current page.

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