RSS and Al's Fastball News
What is RSS?

RSS (or Really Simple Syndication) feeds are free content feeds from Web sites, including, that contain article headlines, summaries and links back to full-text articles on the web.

Benefits and reasons for using RSS

RSS is an easy way for you to be alerted when new content that interests you appears on your favorite Web sites. Instead of repeatedly visiting a particular Web site to browse for new articles, RSS automatically tells you when something new is posted online. Via a news reader, RSS automatically retrieves summaries of the latest content from the sites you are interested in similarly to the way your email software regularly checks for new email.

What tools do I need to use RSS?

To start using RSS, you need a special news reader or aggregator that displays RSS content feeds from the websites you select. There are many different news readers available, many of which are free of charge. Most are available as stand-alone desktop software that you download and install on your computer. Several web-based news readers are available as well as plugin news readers for popular email clients like Outlook and Thunderbird.

Some popular feed readers include Amphetadesk (Windows, Linux, Mac), FeedReader (Windows), NewsGator (Windows - integrates with Outlook), Pluck (adds-on to Internet Explorer), and Sage (adds-on to Firefox/Mozilla).

Many sites, including, display a small icon with the acronyms RSS, XML, or RDF to let you know a news feed is available.

How can I sign up to RSS feeds from

To sign up for RSS feeds from, click on the orange XML button and follow the instructions for your particular news reader to subscribe to RSS feeds.

If you wish to use FeedReader, here is a quickstart guide to get you up and running:
  1. Download and install FeedReader
  2. Open your web browser and go to Al's Fastball
  3. Right-click the XML button and "Copy Shortcut" (IE) or "Copy Link Location" (Mozilla)
  4. Launch FeedReader
  5. Choose "Add New Feed" from the menu options or click F3
  6. In the Add Feed location box, hit CTRL-V to paste the URL you copied from the Al's Fastball site
  7. Click OK and name the news feed something like Al's Fastball News
Now all the news items from "This Month's News" will appear in the newsreader. It acts like an email client, polling the site for new news items about every 10 minutes (you can change this in the Options).

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