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Have you ever been completely overwhelmed by the internet?

It’s like the best library in the world about everything you want to read and it’s always adding new books and it NEVER STOPS! I mean, talk about double-edged sword!

Since a lot more people are jumping on the blogging bandwagon every day, and also, Twitter, and also, Tumblr and a whole bunch of other places, the level of noise is going to keep rising. So how do you find the gems in the trash?

RSS.

Do you know what RSS is? RSS stands for Really Simple Syndication.

I have a page where I keep all of my RSS feeds. It’s here. You can see what I’m looking at.

Why should you use RSS feeds?

Because

0. Instead of having to remember 100 websites where you want to find things, you can have just one place to go.

1. You can use it to keep track of things you’re looking for on craigslist or Amazon, (whether it’s a job, free wood, an appliance, whatever you want)

2. You can look for jobs with it, and never miss another job posting. Indeed.com is your friend here.

3. You can find funny jokes with it. Lately, what’s really been making me laugh is TigerBeatdown.com

4. You can keep up with industry news and blogs.

5. You can find new things to blog about for your nonprofit or business.

6. You can check your email with it.

7. You can use it to track when and where people are talking about you, or your nonprofit.

8. You can use it to aggregate people talking about your cause or keywords on your website.

9. You can have twitter mention alerts when people write your keyword, helping you find new people to follow and converse with.

10. You can narrow the internet down into a more manageable place.

How do you start?
If you’ve never used RSS before, don’t worry. Netvibes.com makes it easy.

Just go there, set up your account, and start with the green plus button on the top left. You can add a feed there.

Where do you find a feed?
All sorts of places.
Every google search you do can be turned into a feed. Also, craigslist searches. Also, many websites.
You can see if a website has a feed by going to the address bar and finding the orange box in the top right corner. If you click it, you will be taken to the feed address.

Once you’re there, copy what’s in the address bar, and paste this into the section of Netvibes where it says Add a feed.

Now it will give you a little widget. Drag and drop that sucker right into your tabs.

Now name your tabs useful things, like “My jobs” or “NP Tech” or “Things that make me laugh.”

Every time you go to check your netvibes page, make SURE you go to the laugh section first. This will train your brain to associate a fun activity with checking your feeds.

Questions? Comments? Do you already read this blog in your feed reader? If so, how is that experience for you?