What you see is a lot easier for you to digest, than for computers to do so. There's another copy of your blog, though, that's designed for computers to digest, so the information can be passed to other places, maybe as part of another web site or blog, or to a reader who is subscribed to your blog, using a newsreader. The other copy is called the site feed.
The site feed contains each individual post, rewritten in XML. XML is a structured data language, making it easier for computer programs to read and process the contents. The site feed contains only the posts - nothing from the template. If the nature of your blog requires access to a gadget in the sidebar, your readers will need to visit the blog directly.
To find the published feed URL for any blog, look in the page source code.
From your browser, select "View" - "Page Source" ("Source" for Internet Explorer). Look in the header. Here's what you'll find, for this blog.
<link rel="alternate" type="application/atom+xml" title="The Real Blogger Status - Atom" href="http://blogging.nitecruzr.net/feeds/posts/default" />
<link rel="alternate" type="application/rss+xml" title="The Real Blogger Status - RSS" href="http://blogging.nitecruzr.net/feeds/posts/default?alt=rss" />
You may be able to see an example of what a site feed looks like, if you like. If you're viewing this post in main page view (or labels retrieval view), look at the bottom of the page, for
Subscribe to: Posts (Atom)
for a link to the posts feed, for the site as a whole. If you created a custom feed, using FeedBurner or a similar service, and if you properly redirected your posts feed to the custom feed, this link will lead to the custom feed.
Similarly, if you're viewing this post in single post mode, look at the bottom of the page, for
Subscribe to: Post Comments (Atom)
for the link to the comments feed, for this post. If you're in main page or label view, click here ==> The Real Blogger Status: What Is My Blog (Site) Feed?, then look at the bottom of the page. Do likewise for the post in your blog.
To enable the newsfeeds, use the dashboard Settings - Other - "Site feed" wizard. The choice of setting for "Allow Blog Feed" affects the use of dynamic templates, and successful search engine indexing of the blog.
As a blog publisher (administrator / author / owner) and as a blog reader, you have a wide variety of subscription options - both of blog comments, and also of blog posts. Know the options.
This blog is The Real Blogger Status http://blogging.nitecruzr.net/.
This blog has 4 site posts feeds.
- Atom (classic): http://blogging.nitecruzr.net/atom.xml.
- RSS (classic): http://blogging.nitecruzr.net/rss.xml.
- Atom (new): http://blogging.nitecruzr.net/feeds/posts/default.
- RSS (new): http://blogging.nitecruzr.net/feeds/posts/default?alt=rss.
This blog has 2 site comments feeds.
- Atom: http://blogging.nitecruzr.net/feeds/comments/default.
- RSS: http://blogging.nitecruzr.net/feeds/comments/default?alt=rss.
This post has 2 comments feeds.
- Atom: http://blogging.nitecruzr.net/feeds/494708298507343989/comments/default
- RSS: http://blogging.nitecruzr.net/feeds/494708298507343989/comments/default?alt=rss
For an alternative discussion, see Blogger Help: Blogger Feed URLs.
Note that the normal URL for an Atom feed, as in the example above, is http://blogging.nitecruzr.net/feeds/posts/default. Consistent with the URL for the RSS feed, http://blogging.nitecruzr.net/feeds/posts/default?alt=rss, you can similarly address the Atom feed as http://blogging.nitecruzr.net/feeds/posts/default?alt=atom.
Some web sites and services may not accept the former, but may accept the latter, Atom URL. All feeds provide for URLs with both suffixes, "?alt=atom" and "?alt=rss".
If you have a syndication newsreader (not the same as a Usenet newsreader, please don't confuse the two), you can load any of the above links and have feed subscriptions for some portions of this blog. Depending upon whether the reader will accept Atom or RSS, you choose appropriately. RSS, supposedly, is more feature rich.
For an exciting way to use newsfeeds, better than just a feed reader (which gives you a blog published to a bunch of anonymous strangers), try Following, which lets you see who your readers are. This gives you a targetable surfing environment - similar in concept to "Next Blog", but with less risk and uncertainty.
The (classic) site posts feeds were available with classic blogs. Starting with New Blogger 2006, additional feeds - comment feeds for the blog ("Blog Comment Feed"), comment feeds for each individual post ("Per Post Comment Feeds"), and Label feeds for the blog, are also available. The (new) naming convention supports a naming (URL) structure for those feeds also.
The Classic feeds, while appearing redundant, have their uses. If you're setting up a Google SiteMap, you'll discover their use. This blog is
blogging.nitecruzr.netThe classic feeds for this blog are
blogging.nitecruzr.net/atom.xmlThe Google sitemap requires the sitemap source file to be in the same folder ("level") as the web site (blog). The new feeds are in sub folders, from the blog root. Neither
blogging.nitecruzr.net/feeds/posts/defaultwill work, to produce a Google Sitemap. Try it, and learn.
Your blog should have its own feeds, equivalently named, for you to use, with two notable exceptions.
- If your blog is being published through FTP, you'll have slightly different settings to consider.
- No feeds are available, with a private blog. Right now (and possibly changing in the near future), feeds are available only with public blogs, and unrestricted access.
You activate the various feeds from Settings - Other - Site Feed.
Knowing the URL of my feed, it's a fairly simple matter to verify that the feed is active.
If you load what you think is your feed URL into your browser, and you don't see a similar notice, recheck your URL. But know what possibilities exist, before you do this.