RSS feeds and Microsoft Outlook, an introduction to RSS feeds

rss breakthrough

You're reading this blog entry if you are new to RSS feeds, but familiar with Microsoft Outlook.

RSS is a very powerful format to let our computer (this web server) talk to your computer quickly and easily. What RSS saves you from doing is returning to your favorite websites, like the IFWIS blog for instance, and checking for new content. The partnership of RSS and a client like Microsoft Outlook, among many others, makes browsing the web be a lot more like receiving an email. You'll save countless hours of web surfing and be able to stay up-to-date with the latest content for just the information you care about. "We feed so you can follow."

Here's an article that explains the process I'll describe below, but tailored specifically for IFWIS blogs and RSS feeds. I've taken the liberty to customize the steps to follow the main IFWIS RSS feed here.



To set up an RSS feed through Outlook, follow these steps:

1) Select "Tools" --> "Account Settings"

The Account Settings dialog box appears.

2) Click the RSS Feeds tab

The RSS sign-up page shows the list of feeds to which you're subscribed.

rss panel

3) Click "New"

A new dialog starts.

add rss

4) Enter the URL of the RSS feed you want.

The main RSS feed for the portal is:

Finding the RSS feed is better explained at the article at


The URL is typically pretty long. If you enter the address inaccurately, it doesn't work. Your best bet is to follow these steps:

1. Go to the site that hosts the feed you want.

2. Right-click the XML, RSS, or Feed button.

Different sites use different names for the same thing, but it's often an orange button.

3. Choose Copy Shortcut.

After you copy the shortcut, you can follow the preceding steps and paste the address into the New RSS Feed dialog box.


Read more:

The RSS Feed Options dialog box shows a variety of changes you can make to your subscription:

Rss details

• Feed Name: You can change the name Outlook displays. 

• Delivery Location: Some feeds generate huge amounts of information every day, so you may want to send that information to a special folder or even to a totally separate data file. If you're on a big corporate network that limits the amount of email messages you're allowed to store, you may want to send your RSS subscriptions to a separate Outlook data file to avoid running out of space.

• Downloads: Outlook automatically downloads only a brief summary of each item, which saves disk space but requires you to manually download full text of each item one by one. If you want Outlook to simply download the whole message, click the box labeled Download the Full Article as an .html Attachment to Each Item. Many blog entries also include attachments such as photos and sounds. Click the box labeled Automatically Download Enclosures for This Feed to do just that.

• Update Limit: Some RSS feed publishers don't let you update your information too frequently. If you try to update too often, they cancel your subscription. If there's a limit assigned to the feed you've chosen, this box is automatically checked.

6. Click OK.

7. Click Close.

Your new RSS feed is ready to bring you the latest on whatever it covers.



We feed so you can follow

Let us make this easy.

We're trying to make it easier for you to keep on top of what we are working on here at IFWIS.  Our work is not just to compile Natural Resources data, but to make it more open, accessible, and well, yours. 

We've just started this process with our new Roadkill App. Stripped of any personal details, save your username, all uploaded data are instantaneously available at where you are free to query, reuse and remix:

We are just getting started. Over the next year we'll be opening up

more data streams via the IFWIS Core API to allow you to remix, reuse and download IFWIS data and we needed a way to tell you about it.  Which brings us to this post.

RSS broadcasting RSS

We feed. You follow.

We've just started this little IFWIS Blog, but we realize that our projects, tastes and interest are pretty diverse. Though you are welcome to follow all our posts via RSS or email subscriptions, we expect the chatter - ranging from web server configs to PIT tagging - will get a little overwhelming.  To that end, we just added RSS Feeds for any tag (the keyword kind) and posted them in sidebar of the IFWIS Blog.  So if your passion *is* roadkill, you can follow those posts via RSS or HTML without all the extra noise.

And if you are passionate about RSS. You can follow the posts on RSS via RSS.

Displaying Recent Roadkill on your Webpage

You can use the Roadkills API to display the most recently reported roadkill on your webpage.

Passionate about Mule Deer perchance?  In a couple quick steps you can add a real-time list of the Recent Mule Deer Roadkills using the magic of JQuery and the Roadkills API.  First, a demo, then the code.


Recent Mule Deer Roadkill

    Loading Roadkill...

The Code

<ul id="roadkillfeed">Loading Roadkill...</ul><script type="text/javascript" src="{YOUR GOOGLE API KEY}">
    <script type="text/javascript" src=""></script><script type="text/javascript">
        google.load("feeds", "1");

        google.setOnLoadCallback(function () {

        function initializefeeds() {
            var feed = new google.feeds.Feed("" + parseInt(Math.random() * 99999999, 10));
            feed.load(function (result) {
                if (!result.error) {

                    var content = document.getElementById('roadkillfeed');
                    var html = '';

                    for (var i = 0; i < result.feed.entries.length; i++) {
                        var entry = result.feed.entries[i];

                        html += '<li><a href="' + + '">' + entry.title + '</a></li>';

                    content.innerHTML = html;

Substitute your Google API Key and your customized URL and you're live!  Well, not the roadkill, but the page is displaying live data as it arrives!