A reader was asking me how I managed to keep track of all those software releases and if I had a a special method that I would use. I do use several methods but one that is working very well and gives me an overview almost instantly is by making use of RSS Feeds. Not all sites offer RSS feeds though but there is a way to create custom RSS feeds for those websites as well.
I'm using a service called Feedity to create custom RSS feeds for websites that offer none.
Update: Before you continue to read note that Feedity is no longer free. It costs $6 per month for 20 feeds now which is quite a lot of money if you ask me. A free alternative is Yahoo Pipes.
I suppose the best way to explain how this service works is by providing an example. I have selected the latest software releases from Betanews as the example. While it does offer a feed, it is as good as an example as any.
Add the url on the Feedity website and click on the preview button. The Feed Builder opens up which you can use to create the feed.
At its core level, all you need to do is select the different titles of items so that the service can distinguish between them and notify you when new ones get posted on the website.
It is usually enough to click on the title and all other titles should be highlighted automatically as well by the application.
It can happen that this does not work automatically. You can then switch to the advanced refinement option provided by the application.
The advanced refined option requires that you look at the website's source code and find the tags that surround the title and summary tags and add them to the refinement settings.
A preview is available that highlights whether the tags have been correctly identified by the service or not. If not, you need to get back and refine them again until the preview shows up correctly.
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Ghacks is a technology news blog that was founded in 2005 by Martin Brinkmann. It has since then become one of the most popular tech news sites on the Internet with five authors and regular contributions from freelance writers.