(This is a re-post from my now-defunct website, BloggingFu)
The term “blog aggregator” is a combination of two words: blog and aggregator.
Okay, I can already imagine some of you going “duh! of course it is”. However, humour me for a minute and let me explain this to you in simple terms, for the benefit of those who really don’t know what a blog aggregator means.
Blog = a web log, or a chronology of news called posts, which are usually snippets of information with hyperlinks pointing to the original article or news.
Aggregator = to combine into a whole, quoting directly from the Oxford English Dictionary.
Therefore, blog aggregator = a collection of posts from web logs combined into one single site, i.e. another blog.
Why would you need a blog aggregator?
Well, blog aggregators are used for numerous reasons, mainly to gather posts from the blogosphere concerning a specific topic, or blogs sharing the same theme. Do a Google search for the term “blog aggregrator” and you will see a myriad of aggregators, covering topics from music to education, from general RSS feeds to geographically-focused topics.
I currently run a blog aggregator called Giuk.net, which aggregates blog posts created by Sabahans (i.e. those who are from Sabah, a state in Malaysia’s North Borneo… you know, where the 1st season of Survivor was done). As an administrator of the site, here’s how I maintain the blog aggregator:
- An interested blogger fills up the registration form online at the site. An automatic e-mail is sent to me.
- I verify the information and any other requirements for the site to be eligible for registration (mainly the compulsory backlink to Giuk.net and some proof that he/she is really a Sabahan).
- I enter their RSS or ATOM feed address into Giuk.net’s administration dashboard (which is really a WordPress dashboard).
- The blog aggregator periodically crawls (i.e. visits and checks) the list of feeds in the aggregator and adds new posts into Giuk.net.
Here’s the thing about my blog aggregator – not only do I have to do just steps 2 and 3 manually, but I also did the initial setup of the aggregator within just half an hour! It’s that easy!
Wondering how I did it? Read part two of my Blog Aggregator how-to installment, where I’ll lead you step-by-step on how I did it with WordPress.