by G.G.

RSS: The Next Generation

Sep 01, 20062 mins
MobileSmall and Medium Business

While RSS is best known as a way to filter the vast world of the Web, most CIOs will want to manage the information they make available via RSS from behind their firewall so that outsiders can’t pry into the innermost thoughts of the company. That need has prompted two companies—NewsGator and KnowNow—to develop enterprise RSS platforms to serve as in-house RSS aggregators so that CIOs can tailor internal and external RSS feeds to specific needs.

Uptake of RSS has been slow so far, however, because to access RSS feeds, users typically need to do a fair amount of configuring of standalone readers, their browser or an e-mail client. But in the next year, the major browser and e-mail client companies—Microsoft and Mozilla—will include native RSS support, so users can read and manage RSS feeds with minimal configuration. So will the next version of Microsoft Office, notes W. Gregory Dowling, senior analyst at JupiterResearch.

Meanwhile, enterprise application providers like SAP and Oracle already include program interfaces to support XML exports for use in RSS feeds—with the major portal providers soon to follow suit, notes Dan Keldsen, senior analyst at the Delphi Group consultancy. “More and more commercial vendors are RSS-enabling their applications,” Keldsen says. And the increasing popularity of Web services—which also uses XML as a standard data format—makes it straightforward to generate RSS feeds from homegrown applications, he adds.