Reader (RSS Feed) App

The Reader app gives you the ability to have dynamic RSS (Rich Site Summary) feeds on your site.

What is a Feed?

A feed is a web technology that pulls in rapidly or frequently updating information from a web source. The information is often displayed as dynamically changing list. A common type of content used in web feeds are news headlines. New headlines are constantly being created, so this content really lends itself to being displayed as a feed.

The great thing about a feed is that once you set it up, the information will automatically update as it changes. Having feeds on your site is a way to make your site lively and dynamic.

How do I find feeds for my site?

The Reader app will process feeds from external web sources. Many web sites will offer feeds for their content, such as latest news. You should browse web sites that have interest and relevance to your web site and look for the orange feed icon. It may say "RSS" feed, which is a type of feed format.

Enabling the Reader App

Before adding any Feeds, you must first make sure the app is enabled.

1. Click to expand Settings

2. Click on Enable Apps
3. Search for READER.
4. Check the Enable box.
enable reader app

5. Click Save.

Return to Home Page

RSS Menu Link

The "Reader" link should now appear in the primary menu. If the Reader link does not appear in your menu, follow these steps:

  1. Go to the control panel and select Menus
  2. Once in the Menu area, Select Add New Link in the Primary Menu
  3. You'll be prompted to choose an Item Type. Please select URL
  4. Click Continue
  5. Enter "Reader" for the menu title & enter the word "reader" (lower case) in the URL field
  6. Click Finish at the bottom of the page.
  7. Click Save.

I found a feed that I want on my site, now what?

You'll need to get:

1) The URL of the feed. (Click on the orange feed icon on the external site and copy the URL.)     
2) The name or title of the feed. (This is for your reference when you add the feed to your site.)

After you have obtained the pieces on information above, you can go ahead and create the actual feed on your site.

To add a feed from your site, click the "Reader" link in your primary menu. Next click on the link that says ADD NEW > FEED and begin entering the feed information.
add new feed

The "Create Feed" Form

You'll need to enter some basic information to the add feed form. Here is where you use the information that you captured in the "You'll need to get:" list above. Populate the "Title" and "URL" fields with this information. You can also add a description about the feed in the body of the form.

add feed form

Where can I see the feeds after they've been set up?

The feeds that you add to your site will automatically appear in the "Reader" section for your site. The latest feed items will also appear in the default widget:
latest feeds widget

If you would like to place a feed on another section of your site, please visit the Feed Reader Widget.


The Reader app comes with default widgets:

Latest Feed Items
The most recent feed items will be listed in this widget. These list items will refresh as new feeds content aggregates.

If you have more than 1 feed, you can choose which one displays in the widget. 

AddThis Widget 
The AddThis widget allows users to share your site's content to social networking sites by book creating shared bookmark lists.
add this button

Importing Feeds

To import a Feed:

  1. Enable Reader app
  2. Upload a file in the CSV format only.
    You may use the Download a template file to use as a guide.
    NOTE: Make sure to save your CSV file using the UTF-8 file format to ensure that your contents are imported without issue.
    import feed
  3. Click Submit.
  4. Go to Content in the Control Panel and the first entry will be your newly imported feed.

Managing Feeds

All of your feeds can be viewed by clicking on "Reader" in the primary menu of your site. You can also view and manage links by navigating to the Control Panel and clicking on the "Content" button . On the right column, under "Type" you will see a "Feed" link and after applying will display a list of your links.

browse feed content

Can I have feeds for the content that I create on my OpenScholar site?

You already do. The content that you create will automatically be available in an RSS feed format for others to subscribe to. To learn about your OpenScholar Site's RSS feeds, visit the RSS Feed Widget.

Keep in mind that the Reader App is designed to pull information from external web sources. Having a collection of feeds from a variety of sources is known as aggregation...and having a web site that aggregates content makes the site lively and interesting for your visitors.

Updated: 31Aug18