Skip to main content


Current Awareness Tools: RSS

Get RSS Feeds

Once you have your RSS reader, you are ready to get RSS feeds.  An RSS feed is the URL that you need to copy and paste into your reader.

RSS feeds are available for many sites, just look for the orange RSS icon  and follow these instructions to add the feed to your reader:

  • Navigate to the site that you wish to subscribe to and locate the RSS icon.  If you are having trouble locating the icon, then check the location bar of your browser (where the web address appears) or scroll to the bottom of the page and look for a link to the site's RSS feeds.  Some sites that publish a lot of material (for example, The New York Times, PLoS and The New England Journal of Medicine) have multiple feeds.
  • Right click on the icon and select "Copy Link Location".  Paste this link (URL) into Add Feeds section of your RSS reader.
  • An alternative to the copy and paste method is to click on the RSS icon and choose your reader from the list of options.

Get RSS Search Alerts from Databases

Many databases allow you to create an RSS feed for a saved search.  Once your create a feed for your search, you will receive a notification in your RSS reader whenever new citations matching your search critera become available.

PubMed

  • Run search in PubMed, choose any filters you wish to apply to your search
  • Click RSS link below search box
  • Choose the number of items to display in the feed and create a name
  • Click "Create RSS"
  • Right click on the XML icon that appears and choose "Copy Link Location"
  • Paste link in your RSS reader
  • An alternative to the copy and paste method is to click on the XML icon; choose your RSS reader from the list of options that appear on the new page

EBSCO (CINAHL, PsycInfo)

  • Run search in CINAHL, choose any filters that you wish to apply to your search
  • Click the "Share" link in the right corner of your search results 
  • A drop-down tab will appear; under "Create an alert", click on the "RSS Feed" link
  • A window will appear with the RSS feed, copy and paste the link into your RSS reader
  • An alternative to the copy and paste method is to select your desired frequency, time period and format and click "Save Alert"; choose your RSS reader from the list of options that appear

 

 

RSS Readers

To get started using RSS, you will need an RSS reader.  RSS readers allow you to collect, organize and read your RSS feeds in one place.

Comparison of a few of the more popular RSS Readers available:

 

 

Web-Based

Mobile

Read Offline

Cost

Link

Feedly Feedly

Yes

App for iOS and Android

No; need to use one of supported apps

Free

 Feedly

The Old Reader

The Old Reader

Yes

No official app; provide list of apps that support

No; need to use one of supported apps

Free

 The Old Reader

RSSOwlRSSOwl

No, desktop for Windows and Mac

No

Yes

Free

 RSSOwl

OutlookOutlook

No, but accessible on the web

Yes, through email or OWA app for iOS (requires Office 365 subscription)

Yes

Free for Duke University faculty, staff and students

 Outlook

NewsBlur NewsBlur

Yes

App for iOS and Android

Yes

Free for up to 64 feeds; Premium account $24 per year

 NewsBlur

FlipboardFlipboard

No

App for iOS and Android

Yes

Free

 Flipboard

 

What is RSS?

RSS, which stands for Rich Site Summary or Really Simple Syndication, is a method of delivering constantly changing web content to users.  An RSS document is called a 'feed' or 'channel'.  An RSS reader, or aggregator, allows you to organize and read RSS feeds from multiple sites in one place.

Why use RSS?

  • Stay Informed: RSS allows you to receive the latest content from the sites that interest you.  You can receive RSS feeds from specific sections of newspapers or magazines (for example, the Health section of The New York Times), journals or searches that you have performed in databases.
  • Save Time: Rather than frequently visiting multiple sites, RSS feeds deliver the content that you want to your RSS reader.
  • Protect Privacy: With RSS, you do not need to create multiple accounts for each website, journal or database that interests you.