Dave Winer, 56, is a visiting scholar at NYU's Arthur L. Carter Journalism Institute and editor of the Scripting News weblog. He pioneered the development of weblogs, syndication (RSS), podcasting, outlining, and web content management software; former contributing editor at Wired Magazine, research fellow at Harvard Law School, entrepreneur, and investor in web media companies. A native New Yorker, he received a Master's in Computer Science from the University of Wisconsin, a Bachelor's in Mathematics from Tulane University and currently lives in New York City.
"The protoblogger." - NY Times.
"The father of modern-day content distribution." - PC World.
"Dave was in a hurry. He had big ideas." -- Harvard.
"Dave Winer is one of the most important figures in the evolution of online media." -- Nieman Journalism Lab.
10 inventors of Internet technologies you may not have heard of. -- Royal Pingdom.
One of BusinessWeek's 25 Most Influential People on the Web.
"Helped popularize blogging, podcasting and RSS." - Time.
"The father of blogging and RSS." - BBC.
"RSS was born in 1997 out of the confluence of Dave Winer's 'Really Simple Syndication' technology, used to push out blog updates, and Netscape's 'Rich Site Summary', which allowed users to create custom Netscape home pages with regularly updated data flows." - Tim O'Reilly.
8/2/11: Who I Am.
My 40 most-recent links, ranked by number of clicks.
FYI: You're soaking in it. :-)
Way back in December 1997, I wrote about Scripting News in XML. "One of the promises of XML is that it will make it possible to have different kinds of browsers, custom-built to present specialized content flows."
And while some angry nerds (heh) will disagree, for sure -- that was the beginning of RSS. The first moment a blog post crawled up on an aggregator and said Hello World.
So maybe what I am about to show you now will also lead to some big things? I think it will.
Here's the deal.
I like to read my news in what I call a river. It's a very simple idea. Read a feed. If there are any new items put them on a raft and float them down the river. Read another feed, etc etc. Yadda yadda. Over and over, for all time.
If you like Twitter or Facebook, it should sound familiar. Of course rivers existed before Twitter and Facebook, as many people will point out. A teletype is a river. The first websites were rivers, as are all blogs. It's a natural step to make our RSS readers work the same way.
For example, here's how I read my news.
If you look at that file, you'll see what a river looks like in code.
As with RSS, it's so simple that you could almost read it without an application. I hope all the names of elements make sense. I strived for simplicity and obviousness.
If you want to build an application that reads this river, please do. Try to read it no more often than once every ten minutes. To read it more often is pointless, that's how often it changes. And don't be shy, if you develop something using this data, show us what it looks like...
Here we go again!