I'm certain this has been asked before, so I apologize ahead of time but I couldn't find anything.
I'm experimenting with RSS feeds, right now I'm setting up one page of my site to be a feed. I've created my rss.xml file (appended to the end of the post) which I've validated at [feedvalidator.org...] I've also put a <link> tag on my page indicating that my page is a feed.
So far you can click on the feed icon in the address bar or on the link I provide on the page and firefox realizes its a feed and offers up options as how you want to subscribe. So I've subscribed using Google Reader.
The problem is that when I update content google reader doesn't realize this. So my question is, how does an aggregator realize when a page is updated? Does it scan the page itself or the XML file?
If it scans the XML file (which I think is the likely case) do you folks just write a script that takes your content (from your site) and dumps it into the xml file or do you do it by hand?
I've started from scratch on purpose, I like writing my own html and css and now I want to understand rss ground up.
Aggregators check the XML files for changes. You'll need to update that file appropriately for the new content to show up.
A lot of CMS and blog software out there will automatically update the RSS file. If you're not using one of these packages then you'll either need to setup an automatic routine that works with your back end, or you could simply update the feed manually.
Thanks for your replies, I really appreciate your time. With regards to manually pinging these services, do you mean writing a little script to do the dirty work? Could you point me in the direction of where I could learn more about that?
Do a search for RSS ping lists or RSS ping sites and you should find a lot. You don't need to ping a ton of these services to get your updates out there. A lot of them are interconnected and feed off one another's data. A meta service like pingomatic would probably do everything you need.
do you mean writing a little script to do the dirty work?
That's a possibility. The other way to do it is visit the ping site and enter the URL of your feed manually into their form.