You've got mail!

2009-06-19 | Category: General (47)

Now that our systems gives me some additional insight into user behaviour and statistics I started to send out mails to various users asking for their feedback (and I took the chance to beg for some recommendations in their favourite social networks :).

I was stunned about the amount of replies and luckily most of them were positive. Some people also contacted us on Twitter.

Here is some of the feedback (I skipped personal insults and MLM guys trying to sell us "I made $11.567,78 the last week and you can too!" e-books. Tweets are linked back, e-mails are mostly anonymized):

"Took me awhile to find the perfect fit for my site & your code is both easy to use and designer-customizable" - jasoncarpio (via Twitter)

"thank you very much! You provide a great service." - RayBeckerman (via Twitter, yes THE Ray Beckerman from http://recordingindustryvspeople.blogspot.com/)

"I got your email and i really like rssinclude... fits in rather nicely seeing as im using wordpress and a traditional cms" - mattatobin (via Twitter)

"I got that sucker! And I will get you too if you don't stop buzzing around here." - BarackObama (via Twitter) (No, really, I didn't make this up. Believe me! I hope PETA comes to save me... *bzzzz*)

"I love your site. I sent you a message about how your feed generator can also embed video players right in the feed! Awesome! You should tell that to your sites visitors." - via e-mail

"Have created a site for a friend who has a farm in Italy and she's loving tweeting to the site and cant wait for it to go live. Cant in all honesty suggest any improvements/enhancements - it's great as is." - via e-mail

"It is great to see such customer service, even for free users." - via e-mail (Hey! This should not prevent you from upgrading to a Premium account!)

"Thank you for following up on my use of the Twitter rssbox. Firstly, I absolutely love it! Secondly, I love all the current customizations to the skin that can be created. If you haven't already seen it in action check out my site" - via e-mail

"Actually, I'd love to be able to mix up to three feeds in one box, being a small blog I can't really afford the premium package for it. Other than that, great service." - via e-mail

"Hey man, I think the service you offer is awesome! I have it on 2 sites, and will use it everytime I need to display my clients feeds in a structured manner. If I was gonna give you one thing to work it might be making a public plugin for wordpress so all the wordpress users out there could just plugin the mod. That would probably increase your traffic ten fold." - via e-mail (Nice idea, but our admin's afraid the server will burst into flames if our traffic ten-folds!)



If you would like to find your statement added here, please use our contact form our simply reply to the signup confirmation mail you got from us. Or you could just sit back and wait till I write you a mail...

Some limitations for free user accounts

2009-05-20 | Category: General (47)

About 6 weeks after launching this service we are still in the process of finding a good balance between free and paid services. Following the recommended book "What Would Google Do" by Jeff Jarvis our basic strategy is to offer as much as possible for free to gain  an ever growing user base.

But since we also offer paid services it is important for us to ensure continuous availability of our system for our Premium accounts. So we took a closer look into the data that we collected during the past weeks and decided to impose some additional limits to free user accounts to avoid a leech of system resources through individual users. This will only affect a very small percentage of current power users with an extraordinary (or should I say extreme) usage behavior.

Count your fingers! With immediate effect...
- 10 is the maximum number of RSSboxes in a free account
- 10 is the maximum number of news items in a free RSSbox

There is a simple and affordable way to get rid of this limitations: Upgrade your account to our Premium plan.

RSSbox optimized for Twitter

2009-05-14 | Category: General (47), Features (19)

Looks like Twitter is the biggest thing since growing your own vegetables in your garden. We thought it is time for some tribute and built an RSSbox especially for this service. Go forward, put this birdie in a cage and place it on your website.

The RSSbox for Twitter is optimized for user profile feeds but runs with search result feeds too. There are some improvements we have to add during the coming weeks but right now it works quite well.

One of the downsides is our systems average feed cache time of up to 60 minutes. So if your life depends on publishing your pacemaker malfunction on your website in real real-time you should probably go for another tool (e.g. Twitters own widgets).

Some examples:


BTW, you can use the box for any other feed too. May look a bit strange, but experiment and decide for yourself!

Before I forget: If you use and like our service, please twitter about us!
http://twitter.com/rssinclude_com

Twitter optimized RSSbox is coming!

2009-05-02 | Category: General (47), Features (19)

We are beta-testing a bunch of new RSSbox templates that will be available next weeks. Among them is an optimized template for the popular Twitter service.

Here is a preview:


Recent update and faster RSSbox delivery

2009-05-01 | Category: General (47), Features (19)

We updated the website to version 1.0.3 on Thursday to get rid of one of the biggest performance problems: the (partially) slow server response for RSSbox requests.

Before the update each RSSbox updated its feed content on request if it was older than 60 minutes. If the RSSbox contained multiple feeds or a feed on a slower server this could take several seconds, thus slowing down the loading speed of the embedding website.

Slow loading is history now. With a new caching system we fetch and prepare the content of all feeds in a continous background process. The rate of cache misses on box request decreased dramatically from around 4000 per day before the update to only 56 in total on Friday, the first full day after the update. This equates to about 0,06% of all requests.

So, if speed issues detained you from using an RSSbox for your live website - give it another try!

Swine Flu News - Humans get swine flu, too

2009-04-28 | Category: General (47), Case Studies (5)

I just discovered on of our RSSboxes on www.swine-flu.com.

This is a good example for the usage of our service for short-time, up-to-date information. swine-flu.com uses pheed.me to combine several feeds into one (pheed.me offers this service for free while we require a Premium account for multiple feeds in one RSSbox) and displays the resulting feed in an RSSbox.


I tried the same for a bunch of news feeds (using our own feed mix feature) and created the following, fondly colored RSSbox (color scheme inspired by Miss Piggy) with the extended tabloid template:

Swine Flu News - from various sources

This RSS feed URL is deprecated

This RSS feed URL is deprecated, please update. New URLs can be found in the footers at https://news.google.com/news

Denmark to add floating barriers to anti-swine flu border fence - The Local Denmark

The Local Denmark Denmark to add floating barriers to anti-swine flu border fence The Local Denmark The barrier will be placed in parts of Flensburg Fjo...

Swine flu case brings extra precautions to county fair - Vincennes Sun Commercial

Vincennes Sun Commercial Swine flu case brings extra precautions to county fair Vincennes Sun Commercial With a case of swine flu reported in Indiana...

NICD allays fears raised over swine flu cases in Gauteng - Eyewitness News

Eyewitness News NICD allays fears raised over swine flu cases in Gauteng Eyewitness News Swine flu is a strain of an influenza virus which has the sa...

Safety first at Gibson County Fair after case of Swine Flu in Indiana - TriStateHomepage.com

TriStateHomepage.com Safety first at Gibson County Fair after case of Swine Flu in Indiana TriStateHomepage.com Fair organizers across Indiana have be...

Reported swine-flu outbreak in Limpopo affects scores of residents - The South African

The South African Reported swine-flu outbreak in Limpopo affects scores of residents The South African Jacques du Toit is the owner of Bosveld Smeermi...

Swine Flu Protection Tips During Illinois Fair Season - Patch.com

Patch.com Swine Flu Protection Tips During Illinois Fair Season Patch.com ACROSS ILLINOIS — As many states across the U.S. enter their annual fair s...

Scores of Limpopo residents contract swine flu - Citizen

Scores of Limpopo residents contract swine flu Citizen One of the many Tzaneen residents who have recently contracted swine flu is Jacques du Toit, owner of Bosv...

South Africa could see more cases of swine flu - Independent Online

Independent Online South Africa could see more cases of swine flu Independent Online South Africans have been bracing themselves for a bad flu season...

More playing: Google News feeds

2009-04-24 | Category: General (47), Case Studies (5)

After tinkering with Twitter yesterday I try to setup a nice RSSbox containing a Google News feed today. My keyword for the news search was "sullenberger", the first term that came into my mind - perhaps because I saw a documentary yesterday in austrian TV.

Google News feeds by default come with lots of overload. The description is built using tables, sometimes there is an image to the left of the news and often there are several links to related news beneath the article.

Without much formatting it looks like this:

Google News about Captain Sullenberger

This RSS feed URL is deprecated

This RSS feed URL is deprecated, please update. New URLs can be found in the footers at https://news.google.com/news

What Elon Musk Should Learn From the Thailand Cave Rescue - New York Times


New York Times

What Elon Musk Should Learn From the Thailand Cave Rescue
New York Times
This approach is what allowed the airline captain Chesley Sullenberger to safely land a commercial airplane on the Hudson River in 2009 after its engines were disabled. Captain Sullenberger's skill and composure were, of course, a credit to him personally.
British diver recalls Thai cave rescue: 'Are we heroes? No' CNN
Cave Rescuer Slams Elon Musk's Submarine Idea YouTube

all 504 news articles »

Challenge The Old Playbook To Breathe New Life Into Your Business - Investor's Business Daily


Investor's Business Daily

Challenge The Old Playbook To Breathe New Life Into Your Business
Investor's Business Daily
Chesley "Sully" Sullenberger had 208 seconds to make a decision after his plane was disabled by a flock of geese. "Landing at the nearest airport was the most obvious answer," she said. "But he put aside more than 30,000 hours of flying experience and ...


Informative, but not very pretty. We are working on a special Google News Box which should fix most of this formatting problems.

Right now an option would be to remove HTML tags completely and limit the number of characters for the article to a fixed amount.

The result, using the Extended Table (Premium accounts only), could look like this:

Captain Chesley Sullenberger - Up-to-date Google News

This RSS feed URL is deprecated

This RSS feed URL is deprecated, please update. New URLs can be found in the footers at https://news.google.com/news

What Elon Musk Should Learn From the Thailand Cave Rescue - New York Times

New York Times What Elon Musk Should Learn From the Thailand Cave Rescue New York Times This approach is what allowed the airline captain Chesley Sullenberger to safely land a commercial airplane on the Hudson River in 2009 after its engines were di...

Challenge The Old Playbook To Breathe New Life Into Your Business - Investor's Business Daily

Investor's Business Daily Challenge The Old Playbook To Breathe New Life Into Your Business Investor's Business Daily Chesley "Sully" Sullenberger had 208 seconds to make a decision after his plane was disabled by a flock of geese. "Landing at the n...

FAA Proposes New Bird-Strike Test Rules - AVweb flash Article - AVweb

AVweb FAA Proposes New Bird-Strike Test Rules - AVweb flash Article AVweb Turbofan engines for airplanes should be required to pass tests showing they could keep flying after ingesting a medium-sized bird during climb-out or landing, ... ...

FAA Proposes New Engine Test For Bird Strikes - CBS New York

CBS New York FAA Proposes New Engine Test For Bird Strikes CBS New York However, the pilot, Chesley B. “Sully” Sullenberger, was able to land the plan safely on the Hudson River. Currently, engines are only tested at 100 percent takeoff power or...

Gerald "G" E. Sullenberger - LancasterOnline

LancasterOnline Gerald "G" E. Sullenberger LancasterOnline Gerald "G" E. Sullenberger, 62, of Lancaster, passed away on Sunday, June 24, 2018. He was the son of the late Mary A. (Segro) and Robert R. Sullenberger, Jr. G enjoyed cooking and grilling...

Tag: chelsea sullenberger - ohmidog!

ohmidog! Tag: chelsea sullenberger ohmidog! Sully is named after Chelsea “Sully” Sullenberger III, the pilot who became famous for landing a damaged passenger jet on the Hudson River and saving all 155 passengers and crew aboard in 2009. He was ...

Former President George HW Bush welcomes service dog, named "Sully" - 10TV

10TV Former President George HW Bush welcomes service dog, named "Sully" 10TV The dogs are trained to help their owners cope with various disabilities, ranging from blindness to PTSD. Sully is named after Chesley "Sully" Sullenberger III, the airlin...

George H.W. Bush enlists help of new service dog Sully - CNNPolitics - CNN

CNN George H.W. Bush enlists help of new service dog Sully - CNNPolitics CNN The Bush political dynasty added another member Monday: Sully HW Bush, a yellow Labrador service dog for former President George HW Bush. Sully H.W. Bush (@sullyhwbush)...


Less media, more content. Still not really good, but looks more consistent.


Testing around with Twitter feeds

2009-04-23 | Category: General (47)

i just played around with Twitter again but I guess I am just not the kind of person who pushes his life online every few minutes.

Nevertheless I tried to create an RSSbox displaying my Twitter feed. This is where two weak points met. On the one hand we have the Twitter feed which doubles every message by repeating the same text in the item title and description.

On the other side our RSSbox templates can not hide the description text right now. This leads to a strange result that looks kind of buggy to me. See for yourself:

Twitter / rssinclude_com

RT @DavidBlueW: Loving embedding RSS into my website and blogs using @rssinclude_com totally coool!

RT @DavidBlueW: Loving embedding RSS into my website and blogs using @rssinclude_com totally coool!

40% of our output servers are transferred into the Amazon cloud now - already delivering up to 70 RSSboxes per second. http://t.co/4pW0U1LS

40% of our output servers are transferred into the Amazon cloud now - already delivering up to 70 RSSboxes per second. http://t.co/4pW0U1LS

We just switched our output servers http://t.co/cInnOYVL to http://t.co/nwk881Kk into the Amazon cloud. Everything up and running fine...

We just switched our output servers http://t.co/cInnOYVL to http://t.co/nwk881Kk into the Amazon cloud. Everything up and running fine...

@mr_omneo the $59.88 includes 20% VAT. If you have a EU VAT ID (or are outside the EU) the annual fee is only $49.90 #rssinclude

@mr_omneo the $59.88 includes 20% VAT. If you have a EU VAT ID (or are outside the EU) the annual fee is only $49.90 #rssinclude

RT @codemakit: Thanks to http://www.rssinclude.com/ now simultaneous feeds on our blogs will be available to our homepage http://www.cod ...

RT @codemakit: Thanks to http://www.rssinclude.com/ now simultaneous feeds on our blogs will be available to our homepage http://www.cod ...


Looks like the RSSbox knows that my brain needs everything repeated twice before understanding it. Ask my wife!

This is a definite flaw. Options to show/hide title, description, date and author of each item will be added next week.

if you want to follow my tweets:
http://twitter.com/rssinclude_com

Signal vs. Noise - 37signals.com

2009-04-21 | Category: Feeds we like (3)

A weblog by 37signals about design, business, experience, simplicity, the web, culture, and more. An inspiring feed I read daily.

The box below was created with the Extended Tabloid template, set to 1 column and 3 rows.


And here the same feed in a more compact form. Extended tabloid, 4x4 cells, title and description shortened and all HTML stripped.

Feed caching & loading time

2009-04-19 | Category: General (47), Features (19)


ATTENTION: The information below is outdated! Caching has been improved big times and box delivery is fast as lightning in 99,9% percent of all requests! (This note added on 27th May, 2009)


It's the question most asked by mail or through our contact form:

Why does my RSSbox sometimes need longer to load than usually?

The answer can be found in the way our system stores feed content in its internal cache. If you create a RSSbox and add a feed, the system first fetches this feed, dumps all unneeded ballast, converts RSS or Atom XML into its own format and stores the result in cache.

Cache time is usually about 60 minutes. So while most of the time a requested RSSbox is delivered within 1/20 of a second, every once in an hour the new feed content has to be fetched from the feed URL. And this can take some time, depending on the speed of the server hosting the feed, it's connection speed, the route between our and the other server and so on.

Most of time it takes only about 1 second to update the feed, store it in cache and return the new RSSbox. But if the other servers reaction is extremly slow or you mix several feeds into one RSSbox (Premium feature) this time can sum up to some seconds.

We are working on a new caching algorithm which updates the feed cache independent from the actual request for a RSSbox. This will eliminate the feed fetch waiting time before the box can be returned. It will  take some more testing till we can put this new feature cache online, but it will reduce delivery time significantly.