I made the Rhode Island Government Press Releases feed of the day at Feedster today. Because everyone should be intimately familiar with the goings on in the smallest state in the US? No, not at all. I put it up because I wanted to showcase a use of RSS somewhere outside of the geekery I’ve been involved in all week long (not that there’s anything wrong with geekery mind you!). Here’s some of the description from the RSS info page on the Rhode Island website:
Much of the information maintained by the Office of Secretary of State is constantly updated. For citizens to get new information, they need to visit different webpages regularly. By making this data available over RSS, you can now get all this information placed at your fingertips.
There also a list of feeds at the Rhode Island eGovernment Exchange if you would like to see more. Makes sense, it’s a great idea. The problem is that not many people are using newsreaders, what use is RSS to the average web browser? This is where having services built around RSS embedded in tools like My Yahoo! can help to really extend the reach. If you already use the My Yahoo! page as your homepage, which a lot of even the non-technical folks out there do, you can add the info from that Rhode Island feed by clicking on this button: .
On the Internet at large there’s an iterative process of breaking information down into smaller channels and then providing more powerful tools to built it back up, and it’s definitely still going on. Once the information is broken down and marked up there’s a lot more that can be done with it than simple display directly in a web browser. The Rhode Island site has some pointers to a good set of information for publishers interested in RSS.