“Want a glimpse of tomorrow? Innovators Bill French and Harry Hayes are SmartStream Alliance and have a product that's so compelling that news executives of every sort will be scrambling to be first in their market with it….
RSxStream is a sophisticated and ingenious software engine that takes RSS, Atom, RDF, XML, any other sort of feed or data stream, or any other content that lives on the Internet and makes it available to the desktop via a contextual reader. End users are given a state-of-the-art reader capable of grabbing anything from live TV to music to video-on-demand to simple RSS text feeds. If it's available via the Internet (today), it can be routed through the RSxStream engine. The end users have complete control of what sources they choose, as they would with any other RSS reader. The difference is those choices are drawn indirectly, through the RSxStream software….
What's crucial to understand with this is that whoever provides the reader to the public also owns the engine, and THAT is the business end of RSS. It means advertising can be crafted into the design of the reader and delivered based on the choices, habits and interests of the end user. It's contextual advertising nirvana. This type of business currently does not exist, but it's ideal for local media outlets. Why? Because we're in the information distribution business, and getting the reader onto the public's desktops is the key to its success. Moreover, if the local media entities don't do it, somebody else will, and they will take all those ad dollars with them.” [DONATA Communications, via JD on MX]
I love the idea of providing the reader and even pre-populating it with feeds relevant to the intended audience, but I hate the idea of some company monetizing it. I'd much rather get a grant and have libraries provide this information-centric software. We're in the “information distribution” business, too, except we're interested in people getting information without strings attached. [The Shifted Librarian]