You may know this: I’m a fan of Common Craft, the folks who have put out those absolutely brilliant short videos “in plain English” on tech topics.
In a recent post, Lee Lefever wrote about “Discovering the RSS Explanation Problem” based on this exchange:
Q: What is RSS?
A: RSS is an XML-based content syndication format.
Say what? A true fact that’s not at all helpful.
He generalizes the “explanation problem” to point out that when someone says “What is …?” they usually mean “Why does … matter to me?”
So here are a few stabs at what is RSS:
- a technology that changes the “pull” of visiting a web site to find its news to a “push” of the site sending you the headlines that you can collect with the headlines from other sites into your own personal “web newspaper”.
- a technology that allows you to republish news from partner web sites on your own site
But do watch RSS in Plain English, and think about answers to the questions
- what is Facebook?
- what is a blog?
- what is AAUW?