In the last post Carrie helped us understand what RSS feeds are and how to use Bloglines to read your feeds. Now that you have the basics of RSS feeds down, let’s get creative. Perhaps you have a feed or two that you’d like to share with your library liaison areas or people who are on a committee with you. You could direct them to the blog and tell them how to subscribe or you could use Grazr to create a feed reader like Bloglines directly on your own website!
Grazr’s free account option will allow you to create unlimited single RSS feed widgets to place on your webpage. If you wish to combine multiple feeds into a widget, you can do this also, but it may cost you. The free account allows you to create one combined RSS widget, but to be able to have multiple combined RSS widgets, you’ll need to pay anywhere from $9.99 a month to $149.99 a month. Confused? Let’s say that you have a liaison web page like the one above, a free account will allow you to stream blog entries from one single blog in any one widget. You will have to create multiple widgets to stream multiple blogs (and they will not be combined). If you would like to create a widget with let’s say health news from Medline Plus, along with health news from the CDC, along with articles from a search you conducted in a database, you will only be able to create one of these multi-stream widgets for free (although you could place this same multi-stream widget in multiple places).
Although the free Grazr account does have its limitations in terms of multiple feeds, it can still be a great resource for your liaison pages as well as on any webpage where you’d like to share the latest news, articles or updates from another website, blog or even podcast. Amanda Taylor, a librarian here at Towson has come up with a great way to share new books in the library using Grazr. She has created a blog listing all of the new science books as they come into the library. Grazr allows this blog to be viewed from her different subject pages such as this page: http://pages.towson.edu/amtaylo/biology.html
So I guess you could say that Grazr allows you to be super web 2.0- not only are you able to direct feeds into your feed reader like with Bloglines, but then you are able to push that feed back out on any relevant webpages.