Friday, 27 August 2004

The other day I wrote an article about how RSS saves me so much time when it comes to work. Interestingly, it's been so heavily traffic'ed I'll have to look at upgrading my account to accommodate the extra bandwidth. But that's just fine, and I have had a few interesting conversations with people the past couple of days as a result. The beauty of the blogging community is that everyone has thoughts, ideas and opinions, and we can share them so effectively.

Matthew Lanham commented on what I wrote, and made an interesting point:

“Sounds great - but here's a question: How many corporate information infrastructures out there already have RSS/Atom aggregation as part of the big picture? My bet is that most of them still don't and the RSS driven employee is still using her own aggregator or a centralized system like Bloglines to read those feeds. So what happens to that information once you've read it? Is it piped into the corporate information system to be spread amongst the rest of the company or does it just "disappear"? From a corporate side there is still a lot to be done to bring both worlds together. And the software vendors like Microsoft and IBM need to integrate that functionality (both aggregating and reading) into their line of products before RSS and Atom become corporate mainstream. But it'll happen.”

He's right - for now there is no real, commercial, out of the box capability for aggregating information found via RSS at the corporate level. That's why we built our own, of sorts.

We run SharePoint Portal Server and Windows SharePoint Services on our Intranet, and one of our talented developers created in-house web parts that both consume and expose information in RSS. Since then, several others have created similar things.

The RSS display web parts allow me to create areas on the Intranet where users can see the latest information about any given topic, and the web part is available for any site creator to use, so they can aggregate internal and/or external information/feeds on their Intranet sites, too. The other components allow us to expose any list of information on a SharePoint site as an RSS feed.

It's only a first step, and Matthew's point is well-taken. We can create it now, each of us putting the work in individually to create something custom, or the big boys can do it for us. The beauty of a company like Microsoft or IBM building it and packaging it (there is a standard to follow, after all) is that they can make a single investment that the rest of us can leverage. That is a value-add proposition, and what I expect from the companies whose software I buy.



Add/Read: Comments [1]
RSS Stuff | SharePoint | Tech
Wednesday, 01 September 2004 08:56:26 (Pacific Standard Time, UTC-08:00)
Hi Greg,

I cross posted your first article as I could have written it myself. Its good to see some discussion of corporate blogging. I wrote a lot about this in the past and have linked again to your comments, and added a few thoughts of my own.

http://steves.businessblog.com/blog/_archives/2004/9/1/133884.html
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