Paul Irish

Making the www great

How to Make an RSS Feed Where One Never Was

Update: Feed43, mentioned in my post, has now lost data and I’d consider an unreliable pick. You can now use Yahoo Pipes and Dapper to do the same. I recommend both. is has social networking, but doesn’t really make those features very prominent, so you may not have noticed. The network page is the most helpful piece of aggregation. After you friend people, their bookmarks will be aggregated there:’s network page on One feature that hasn’t been implemented is notification of new people adding you to their network. I wanted to be kept aware, but I couldn’t use a service like ChangeDetection (mentioned in my post here), because the entire page was changing all the time. I needed to isolate a small part of the page.

I used a service called Feed43. It takes a while to get the filtering right. Basically you have to tell the parser how to identify news items. Here’s some photos that should help show how to do it:




In the end, I came out with a good looking RSS feed of my network fans: Now whenever anyone adds me to their network, a new RSS item will be created and I’ll see! Score.