The popularity and effectiveness of RSS feeds as powerful marketing tools is a fact that cannot be denied. Almost immediately after its introduction and distribution among hordes of eager internet users, online RSS feeds were implemented throughout most the different levels of the online world.
Millions of internet users have subscribed to RSS feeds in order to automatically receive relevant news and information directly to their homepages, thereby eliminating the need to spend precious time seeking out that same information. There is hardly a blog writer out there who hasn’t embedded one of the leading RSS directories into their blogs and even Ezines used RSS feeds as their “daily news” for some time.
RSS feeds for picture galleries is another technology that has been around for a while. Websites like Photobucket, Flicker and Picasa have been providing their users with advanced RSS feed features like: “latest pictures from all albums”, “album pictures”, “album pictures” and even RSS feeds to all of a user’s album thumbnails. However, users were faced with difficulties whenever there was a need to create a new picture gallery or update new pictures into existing galleries – while pictures could be embedded into a slideshow, any new picture galleries that were created or pictures that were updated had to be separately updated into RSS feed slideshows.
The next stage in the evolution of RSS feeds for picture galleries will offer interactive, personalized features allowing users to tailor their slideshows specifically to their liking. Pictures will be available for download and even sale – directly from the RSS feed slideshows!
A variety of innovative and user friendly gadgets have been released that solve the problem of separate updates for slideshows. One such gadget, based on the latest Ajax feeds API technology, was recently provided by Google open source. The gadget is simple to use: All you have to do is paste the RSS URL of the picture album you would like to create as a slideshow into the gadget box, give it a title, preview it, GET the code and paste it into your OTHER web presences such as blog, site, social page, or into your igoogle page.
The benefits offered by this new technology are undeniable:
o It will automatically display your latest pictures from your original gallery
o It will LINK to your gallery, your disciplined server/messenger, and you’ll only have to make the update once.
o It will be added to your igoogle page.
The gadget is just the tip of the iceberg of an application to be announced in a couple of weeks. Currently the gadget which can be found at -RSS Slideshow gadget- only supports Picasa, Flicker and Photobucket feeds. To date the best image resolution is via Picasa feeds but in a matter of days image resolution will be enhanced for the other pictures as well.