I remember a time when web browsers displayed an RSS icon in their address bar when you opened a website with a feed. The icon served two purposes. First, it reminded you that the site offers an RSS feed, and second, enabled you to subscribe to that feed with a couple of clicks tops.
Then one day, the icons were removed from the browsers, probably to make way for the new minimalism that was suddenly en vogue, or maybe, because it was one of the features that was not really used enough.
The removal on the other hand made it a lot harder for users to find out if a site was offering an RSS feed or not. While some sites display the information prominently on their website, others do not and the only option in this case is to look at the source code or identify the software used to power the site to find out about the RSS feed url. WordPress websites for instance always use /feed/ as the main feed directory by default, but that too can be changed easily if a feed service like Feedburner is being used (another Google service that is probably going to be retired eventually).
Google announced recently that it would retire its RSS feed reader Google Reader, and the company pulled the RSS feed extension for its browser Google Chrome at around the same time from the Chrome Web Store.
Note that Opera does not need an extension as it is still displaying an indicator in its address bar when feeds are available on a site.
We already published a list of Google Reader alternatives for you, and today, we would like to complement that by publishing a list of programs that you can install in your browser of choice to get an indication if a feed is available on a website.
There are lots of extensions and userscripts out there for that task. The following selection is not complete and if you know or use an extension or script that you are using for that purpose, let us know about it in the comments so that we can all benefit from that knowledge.
Those extensions cover all major browsers and should work just fine for the majority of scenarios. Please post your favorite way of discovering RSS feeds on the Internet below in the comments.Advertisement
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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.