Looking For Aussie Blogs for My RSS Habit

8 08 2007

Australia is a big place (doh), and I am challenged to be able to get a sense of issues, challenges, dynamics, concerns, wishes, nightmares, strange habits (!) of educators I will meet there. I rely heavily on RSS for being informed, and I am more or less in love with scanning feeds in Google Reader.

A Few Aussie Blogs in my RSS ReaderIt struck my last night, after a serendipitous Skype chat with Alexander Hayes, that I ought to start more focused reading of some Australia educator blogs. The nice thing about Google Reader (well one nice thing among many) is that instead of creating folders for fixed bins to organize feeds, you simply tag them to mix and match into different groups. So I could rummage through my educational technology feeds, and just add a tag for a new group I called “aussie” for ones I was already following, like Angela Thomas, Gary’s rambles, jo kay, James Farmer, Sean Fitzgerald – okay, hardly the comprehensive guide to edubloggers at all. So I visited a few of these and grabbed a few more from their blog roll.

But I need more to help better inform me. Send me your suggested reads for Australia educators in the know who are regular bloggers.

But there’s more to do with Google Reader! With these feeds set as a “tag”, I can go into my Settings and in the tags tab, I can set this group of feeds to be “shared” or public:

Google Reader tags

This does three neat things- I get a link I can share to a page that always features the latest news stories form all these feeds; this in turn has an RSS feed I can use elsewhere, and the “add a clip” to your site provides some code I can use to embed the feed headlines on another web site. now since Google is connected to Blogger, they have a direct route to add a widget to one of those sites (see my Blogger lab area, CogDogHouse, a place I use just to demo features; the sidebar features the same headlines from this group of feeds).

WordPress.com sidebar with feedsBut I cannot use the Javascript code in a WordPress.com site, so hmmm….

Wait a minute, I can use an RSS widget in WordPress.com, so I can use that on this site, and voila, down the side of this blog are the latest posts form this feed set, the RSS feed, and the title links to the public page.

I am still 1000% convinced that having that sixth sense for using RSS is an absolute skill that can get you ahead. In many of my presetnations about technology, I admit to the myth that many technology people have this song and dance about “technology saving you time” and that we are really all liars about that– RSS is really the one thing I feel confident that mastering the basics can absolutely save you time in terms of staying up to date with the resources in the areas that matter to you.

But hey, I know I am missing about 1000 good Australia educator blogs– help me! Send ’em my way! My Google reader is Hunnnnnngry.

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4 responses

10 08 2007
Sean FitzGerald

Google reader is great, but the one thing it doesn’t do that Bloglines does is allow you to make your subscriptions public, so I’m not sure who is already on your list.

Here are a few suggestions:

Alex Miller – http://www.flairandsquare.com/

Graham Wegner – http://gwegner.edublogs.org/

Leigh Blackall – http://learnonline.wordpress.com/
(Leigh’s escaped across the ditch, but he’s still an Aussie)

And it may be worth keeping an eye on news that EdNA is picking up – http://tinyurl.com/yrapfo

Lack of javascript in WordPress.com getting to you yet? 🙂

10 08 2007
Alan

I agree with you on the lack of a blogroll from Google Reader as a oughtta have feature, and it truly cannot be that big a task (previously barked).

And Bloglines has done this for like.. forever. So My solution is one step up from sneaker net:

1. Export mt GR subscriptions as OPML.
2. Log in to Bloglines and wipe out all my feeds (this is not viable for anyone who relies on bloglines for the archiving they do; if that was the case, I’d set up a second BL account for the sole purpose of being the blog roll maker).
3. I import my GR feeds from the OPML file.

Now I have my current blogroll, public http://www.bloglines.com/public/cogdog

But alas, why, oh why, is WordPress.com’s sidebars so limited! I hate being limited to the widgets. And at the same time, over at the competition, the widgets at Blogger allow Javascript- so my lab blog there has a more functional sidebar than here.

And thanks for the new feeds- I already have Leigh in my edtech feeds, and wavered as to whats trict rules I’d have for my Aussie blog roll. Is it that the bloggers are Australian or that their blog posts are? Sigh, maker of the rules is not always a fun role.

10 08 2007
Sean FitzGerald

Yes, I would have been using Bloglines for a blogroll if WordPress allowed javascript.

Although it’s not dynamic, which is one of the advantages of creating a blog roll from a feed reader account – when you add blogs to your reader they automagically get added to your blog roll.

Here’s another worth mentioning: Mike Seyfang http://mseyfang.edublogs.org/

28 08 2007

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