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Okay now roll up your sleeves, close the door, take the phone off the hook and get ready. You are going to begin to create an RSS feed.
To Recap we have on the drawing board:

  1. What you want to go into the feed
  2. Patience
  3. A place to put it up on the net
  4. Patience
  5. A small smattering of technical knowledge
  6. Patience

The very first thing we need to do is understand the makeup of our “rss.xml” file. Well actually the very first thing we need to do is get a template to understand the makeup. We will go from the simple to the more complicated, so don’t get stressed.

First point to remember. The template below does NOT include all possible options and/or variations. We will go from simple to complex. And I do not expect anyone to be able to get all the possible permutations at one shot. What we are simply trying to do is explain the layout so you can get the schema into your head and understand the various possibilities.

Of course if you are really into discovering all the techie jargon and possibilities about XML I suggest to start off at: http://www.feedvalidator.org/docs/rss2.html. This will lead you slowly and surely into the possibilities of RSS template creation and all its permutations.

If you are a “techie” or the inner workings of HTML and XML are not a mystery to you, then the template below will be fairly self-explanatory. However, if you are new to the world of XML and especially RSS then it would be a good idea to take the few minutes to study this template and all the explanations.

One of the points to remember is that if you do a Google or Yahoo search for “RSS templates” or something along that line you will come up with a great many articles. Unfortunately, most of those articles are written on a level that demands you have some expertise in these areas. Below I am going to try and explain in “layman” terms what each entry means.

XML has its own markup language. All the commands like HTML are enclosed in <> as you can see below. Some commands demand that the “command” or “code” be placed between the < opening and the ending > such as the first line in the template:

<br /> <?xml version="1.0" encoding="utf-8"?><br />
Other commands demand a beginning and an end marker such as <item> </item>. As in HTML the marker with the / (slash) such as </item> tells XML you are at the end of the entry marked as <item>.

Okay first the Template then we will begin to divide it up.

<br /> <?xml version="1.0" encoding="utf-8"?><br /> <?xml-stylesheet type='text/css' ><br /> <rss version="2.0" xmlns:dc="http://purl.org/dc/elements/1.1/">
<channel>

<description>&#8221; &#8220;</description>

<copyright>&#8221; &#8220;</copyright>

<link>&#8221; &#8220;</link>

<language>&#8221; &#8220;</language>

<lastBuildDate>&#8221; &#8220;</lastBuildDate>

<image>

<width></width><height></height>

<link></link>

<url></url>

</image>

<item>

<description>&#8221; &#8220;</description>

<copyright>&#8221; &#8220;</copyright>

<link>&#8221; &#8220;</link>

<language>&#8221; &#8220;</language>

<lastBuildDate>&#8221; &#8220;</lastBuildDate>

<image>

<width></width><height></height>

<link></link>

<url></url>

</image>

(Remember if you look at the bottom of the file you will find the end Channel marker which is of course

</channel>.

Now the next level as we drill down is the item (items within the channel).

<item>

<title></title>

<link></link>

<dc:creator></dc:creator>

<pubDate></pubDate>

<description></description>

</item>

Again each item will have a title. The item title here may be:
Seduction – The Perfect Unisex Scent

As you can see the file follows a logical template drilling down from:

  1. XML lines – “Hello World I am an XML file”
  2. Channel – “Hello World. This is my Channel and the overall topic we will be discussing in the Channel.” (and all the info you want to give on it.)
  3. Item – “Hello World. I am an item in the above channel. Here is my information, my pictures, my source and where you can find me.”

And remember at the end you will need the closing for both Channel and RSS:

</channel>

</rss>

If you are an author or writer think of it like this:

  • XML Lines describe the genre – Say “Hello World This is a book on fantasy”
  • Channel Line describes the book – Say “Hello World this is a book whose title is “Randy Pandy’s Perfumery”
  • Item Lines describe each chapter. “Hello World this is a chapter “Seduction – The Perfect Unisex Scent”

Don’t get worried yet. I am not going to leave you high and dry. In my next article I will teach you how to fill out each item in the Channel and Item declarations. When we are done with that, you should be able to create a fairly decent XML file and template.

This is a continuation from my articles on RSS

  • Part One – “RSS Mania Addiction – An Introduction to RSS and the Terminology”
  • Part Two – Outline of How to Create an RSS Feed”

Ted Gross - EzineArticles Expert Author

Ted W. Gross owns Virgin Earth, a real estate brokerage firm in Jerusalem, Israel. Virgin Earth represents residential and commercial real estate all over Israel. The web site for Virgin Earth is: http://www.virginisrael.com. Virgin Earth also maintains an RSS Feed on its current properties which can be found on most pages in the web site of Virgin Earth. Virgin Earth also operates an Israel Tourism Portal. Virgin Earth – Israel Tourism & Information Portal on the same site. Ted Gross can be reached at: virginearth@gmail.com Ted Gross is also a published author and maintains a web site for his works. This can be found at: http://www.virginisrael.com/twg/iw.html

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