Macromedia and RSS

You may have noticed that over the past year we have really begun to leverage RSS through weblogs, content on the DevNet Resource Kits and the Macromedia XML News Aggregator (MXNA). This string of resources and projects utilizing and focusing on RSS has not been a coincidence, but rather the product of the realization of the power of RSS. This realization began over a year ago when we began publishing weblogs. Initially, we saw weblogs primarily as a way to quickly publish news, information and content (i.e. a better way to communicate with our communities). However, I believe that the real power of weblogs is not that they allow you to easily publish content, but rather that they make it so simple to syndicate that content (via RSS). You can see some of the power of that syndication through the multitude of Macromedia community focused RSS aggregates, including MXNA, Flog, Flogspot and Goog.

RSS has become a universal format for communicating all sorts of information and data. In fact, in some of our projects, we actually abstract away all data access and sources from the program, by first transforming everything into RSS. This makes it very simple to create projects that can utilize data from virtually any source. If we want to add a new source, we just write a quick plugin that transforms the source into RSS.

core project <–RSS– data plugin data source

This is a simple example, but I think it demonstrates the real power of RSS.

So, I wanted to take a quick inventory of the projects and resources that Macromedia has worked on over the past year that take advantage of RSS.

Of course, you can expect us to continue to take advantage of the format. There is a ton of additional useful content on Macromedia.com that could be syndicated via RSS (technotes, exchange items, etc…). I also don’t think it would be too far of a leap to expect future DRKs, and products such as Central to take advantage of and utilize RSS.

So, what RSS content, feeds, tool would you like to see from Macromedia? Post your suggestions in the comments section.

12 Responses to Macromedia and RSS

  1. Daniel Dura says:

    How about an RSS Feed of the last 10 (or N) items added to the exchange? Maybe you could even limit it by product (ie http://www.macromedia.com/go/exchange.xml?n=20&app=flash)

  2. Burch Blog says:

    Macromedia and RSS

    Mike Chambers has summed up Macromedia’s RSS endeavors. He has also mentioned some possible future projects. You can check out what he has to say here: http://www.markme.com/mesh/archives/002604.cfm On this note what do you think could enhance the curr…

  3. Todd says:

    I second what Daniel said, I’d also like to see a technote RSS feed and a webservice that allows us to search those technotes and gallery.

  4. Michael Conger says:

    Here here… color me sick of the exchange flash interface. Literally takes me 4-5 times longer to wade through and find tags/functions/components that interest me… If I could at least have a quick way to browse through them like an RSS feed, it would make a WORLD of difference.

  5. John Dowdell says:

    Hey, how about Macromedia Jobs Postings as an outgoing RSS feed? That item I ran last week got a lot of clicks, so it seems this would be a useful resource.Events and User Group meetings might be an option, but these are geographically constrained, so they might be better handled locally.Hmm, changes to prices or options in the Macromedia Store might be an option… I’ll try to check in face-to-face with those folks today.I think the big difference between RSS alerts and email alerts is that you know you can remove yourself from a listing whenever you want. In email you have to trust the judgment of each person who ever learned your address… in RSS you can choose who you trust to push stuff at you, and you can change this at any time.

  6. I agree with all comments so far. I want to triple up on the TechNote Feeds.

  7. John Dowdell says:

    btw, Shirley Kaiser is running some useful articles this week on the user experience of using RSS, and how to set things up to enhance that experience:http://www.brainstormsandraves.com/

  8. Another plus one for the tech notes – especially if we could filter by product. Ditto for the exchange as well. The exchange RSS should have complete filtering options so we can browse by type, last updated, etc.

  9. Geoff Bowers says:

    I’ve been screaming from the roof tops for more outbound feeds to various people — would love to see *everything* Macromedia publishes to their website summarised in feeds. Ideally, a series of URL params might enable us to break the feed into whatever category options we find useful.You might start by defining an internal taxonomy of least content type (technotes, articles, press, etc) and product type (dw, cf, flash, etc).Another thing many localised community sites (eg. CFUGs, MUGs, etc) would like is a feed for events categorised by region and product type — this is something I could personally help with given we seem to manage much of the international events registration for mm.It shouldn’t be a case of *what* you syndicate, more a matter of *when* — that is, do everything, prioritise the most popular feeds, but plan to release it all.

  10. What about a feed that gives me all the latest posts to Macromedia Weblogs? Please? 🙂

  11. Simon says:

    How about a RSS feed of the MXNA? Ideally being able to choose a RSS feed per category. Then I don’t need to add all those hundreds of feeds to my RSS reader manually 😉