The Microsoft RSS Patent Issue!

As I have been watching the Microsoft Syndication (RSS) Patent dispute over the past couple of days the single word that comes to my mind is “Arrogance” and lets look at the definition of the word Arrogance.

Arrogance – Overbearing Pride evidenced by a superior manner toward inferiors

Microsoft’s actions are such that they have made it very evident that they do not respect those that should rightfully be labeled as inventors of RSS and they outrightly slap those that developed RSS in the face.

The overall debate in the community has been quite negative with a few voices asking for reasoning. In my opinion big corporations are always looking to use their muscle and lay claim to something they have no right to lay claim to. When Microsoft came to Gnomedex in 2005 and announced how they were going to have RSS/XML integrated into there forthcoming applications I think we were all pretty much pleased.

But the current situation with this patent application has a lot of people pissed off and highly concerned. There are a lot of prior art issues and I think Microsoft will have an up hill battle on its hands to get this approved, but they have a army of patent lawyers, and I am sure that the patent office treats Microsoft patent applications a lot more seriously than the average persons application.

I am hoping that Microsoft will make an official statement on the issue but I am not holding my breath. If the succeed in getting this patent approved it will be a great tragedy and I am sure the source of some serious litigation.

[Scripting.com] [Scripting.com] [Nick Bradbury] [Nial Kennedy] [Open] [WatchMoJo.com]

Does RSS Auto Discovery work on your Website?

FeediconFor some reason last Saturday when a buddy of mine said to me hey you know that IE7 has RSS Auto Discovery correct? Well it made me think, had I added the code necessary for Auto Discovery before? I immediately loaded one of my templates, and saw I had the auto discovery code already installed. Which was a good thing!

Now that IE7 has RSS Auto Discovery, a lot of new people are going to be investigating the feed icon, and once they get hooked into syndicated content stand-by as your RSS subscriptions are going to increase dramatically.

If you need instructions on how to add the code it is very simple and should take you about 30 seconds to get it added to your templates. [Microsoft Publishers Guide]

There is a lot of Mangled RSS out their!

Dealing with RSS, OPML and the Extensible Markup Language (XML) at the development front has been very straight forward when working with sites that have 90% of their XML valid! But at this point I am very worried in our deployment of Blubrry.com of the 10% of sites that have completely jacked up RSS feeds.

As locked down as the RSS specification is a lot of people are really butchering there feeds, and it has me worried. You try to think of all the stupid things people will do with their feeds and then how to counter it with code so that it does not introduce some bug on our end.

Angelo the lead developer at RawVoice asked me tonight he said how strict do we want to be on RSS Feed Validation, and as much as I wanted to say that only sites that have Valid RSS feeds would be able to play on Blubrry. I knew that was highly unrealistic. But I told him to throw a series of flags in the database that would alert us to mangled RSS feeds. I am sure some mangled feed will cause us issues I guess thats just a sad fact of doing business on line in a non perfect world. [Nick Bradbury]

Robert Scoble said big news out of PDC where is it!

Robert I am wondering were the big news out of PDC is, if the big news is that Windows Vista has a lot of RSS support, did we not know that was coming already, and many of the features were already expected. Do you have another rabbit your going to pull out of a hat? Or was it the Office interface change?

I love RSS but come on, really rock our world with something amazing! I want Microsoft to really wow us instead of just getting their applications compliant with a standard that has been on the map for a long time.

Let’s see if you can really wow me today with something new and exciting.

Odeo is Hijacking Feeds! (Not anymore See the Update)

Update: Situation looks to be resolved be sure to read this response from ODEO they say it was a mistake, and I am surprised more beta testers did not call them out on this. Are people so immune these days that they will just let companies do what they please with their RSS feeds. Obviously they went to General Quarters after I posted this, but I wonder if anyone had said anything, if they would have continuesd re-packaging everyones RSS feeds the way it was. I am still confused on the purpose of those odeo.com replicated RSS feeds. If I get a invite to the Beta I will take a closer look.

The article that started resulted in the change!

I had a beta tester that got a close look at Odeo send me some information. Apparently Odeo is taking all of the Podcast it has in it’s current directory and creating their own custom RSS feeds.

First of all this really wrong in a big way. Here is my normal podcasting feed. http://www.geeknewscentral.com/podcast.xml what Odeo is doing, so I am being told, is creating a custom feed http://odeo.com/channel/rss/411 that has the same content of my above referenced feed (maybe) what does this do. Well it is deception in the fact that they have Hijacked my feed without permission, and are in a sense re-directing it.

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Odeo is going to have to learn to play nice in a hurry, if this is indicative of what they are going to be doing, their are going to be a bunch of very pissed off people.

Odeo I am happy you listed my show in your directory, but I want you to point to my original RSS feed, “the one that I own and control”, and am responsible for. I don’t want possible listeners to this show that find me on your site to think somehow that I am a part of your network. I also don’t want you sticking in any advertising or collecting any metrics about my listeners. Plain an Simple.

Be a good citizen and point to everyones original feeds!