Review: Syndication Studio 2004
Syndication Studio 2004, pre-release version
Here's a product that I've been expecting to emerge for quite some time:
a dedicated editor for syndication files. If you've been reading
Developer Central for a while, you've certainly heard me talk about RSS
files and news aggregators. The former are a standard way for Web
publishers to place content in XML, the latter are applications that go
fetch RSS (or other syndication) files and display them on your local
machine. The effect is to have the parts of the Web that you care about
pulled back to your desktop for easy reading.
Some people create syndication files automatically by using a blogging
tool. Others build them from scratch in an XML editor, or by writing
custom code. I've used all of these strategies myself. Syndication
Studio adds a third choice: a modern application that lets you create
the files by working in an editor that prevents you from making
mistakes. Syndication Studio works by letting you define a project,
which contains some basic information about your Web site and the feeds
that you want to produce. Then you build up a treeview of the content
that you want to include in the files, and edit the pieces in a built-in
text editor. When you're done, launch a wizard to publish the actual
files, which you can then upload to your Web site.
Syndication Studio understands RSS 1.0, RSS 2.0, Atom 0.3, and OPML. You
can publish all four formats from a single source file, or pick and
choose the outputs that you want. You can also open existing feeds, and
convert from one feed type to another. The overall application is quite
easy to use and responsive, and if you've been building your RSS files
by hand you are definitely in the target audience.
This pre-release version lacks a few amenities, like a help file, and
has some tiny rough edges. But it's definitely a completely usable
application. You can download a 14-day trial from the company's Web
Mike Gunderloy has been developing software for a quarter-century now, and writing about it for nearly as long. He walked away from a .NET development career in 2006 and has been a happy Rails user ever since. Mike blogs at A Fresh Cup.