Will Richardson is starting to “get” it:
“I think I'm starting to understand why Jenny and so many others are really hot on RSS and its potential. The more I mull over the scenarios of how it might work in the classroom, the more interested I get.
Aside from the rather mundane (at this point) concept of having kids subscribe to different feeds for information gathering and research purposes, the whole idea of using RSS for basically schoolwide communication is really wild. I know that I'm assuming a lot here, like teachers and administrators and parents will a) be open to the technology and b) care enough to use it.”
Now take another giant leap for mankind and imagine a news aggregator that has your local newspaper's headlines, news from your municipality, programs you've noted interest in from the park district, announcements from both your kid's school and teacher, status reports from your kids' sports teams, a notice of the “special of the day” from the local coffee shop you love, and on and on and on.
Yes, it's an information explosion contained all on one page and you don't have to do the work! That's why I think RSS (or something very much like it) will be very big. On cell phones, PDAs, tablets, and laptops, it makes great sense for portability. Of course, we'll need better aggregators and they'll have to support services like authentication, prioritization, multimedia, and things we haven't even thought of yet. The key will be to create an aggregator that looks and acts like a web page. You won't call it an aggregator. Instead it will be sold as “the daily news you want” or something like that. It will have a catchy name that my neighbors would understand and actually try. It won't be a “technology” – it will just be useful.
And wouldn't it be great if it was brought to you by your local public library! [The Shifted Librarian]