RSS Future

Steve Gillmor writes:

RSS bottlenecks are the early indicators of business models for the new architecture. Witness Slashdot, which constrains the number of RSS requests per hour. Alternatively, services that offer more frequent rates can charge for the privilege. A multi-tiered cost structure can offer variable rates based on the relationships between customers, suppliers, and partners along the supply chain. High-value customers might pay nothing for rich feeds, just as Amazon throws in shipping above a certain order amount.

The rewards for adopting the RSS model are greater for those who lag in the current online economy. By contrast, Microsoft has little apparent incentive to destabilize Office by extending the free browser to support not just content aggregation but creation. Yet that is exactly what the competition is moving toward: an RSS console that automates the capture, consumption, and routing of strategic information.

Just as blogging drove the initial adoption of RSS aggregators, so too will moblogging (short for mobile blogging) drive the addition of rich media capabilities to the RSS information router. Whether it’s Dave Winer’s imagined “big red record button” on a future iPod, a suite of audio mixing tools that mix iChatAV, VoIP, microphone, MP3, and GarageBand feeds, or an intelligent router that uses attention data from aggregator services to predict where BitTorrent caches need to be positioned to allow reliable and scalable feed distribution, the resulting blend of these tools will certainly be a killer app for information professionals and consumers alike.

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Rajesh Jain

An Entrepreneur based in Mumbai, India.