Enterprise RSS channels your information streams
Attensa, NewsGator, and KnowNow target feeds to knowledge workers
NewsGator helps you quickly find information from potentially thousands of feeds. There’s a standard category filter to discover relevant articles within a feed or folder -- and a handy search form for locating feeds using keywords. These worked well, but I often relied on the innovative Recommend feature within search; it provided extra precision by ranking results based on what feeds others in my group subscribe to, along with their rating. Last, Smart Feeds pull back content-matching keywords into custom feeds.
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If you’re not running Exchange or Outlook, a subset of the Web administration interface -- designed for end-users -- provides a comfortable way to manage and read feeds. HTML-capable mobile devices can run NewsGator Go. I especially liked the ability to view feeds through my SharePoint portal sites. NGES synchronizes your actions among all these interfaces. That is, when I marked a feed as read on my PDA, I didn’t have to duplicate this step in Outlook.
NewsGator Enterprise Server balances needs across your organization. It’s easy to administer, especially getting relevant information to casual users through Outlook; in fact, they don’t even need to know what RSS means. Yet power users get their choice of interfaces, such as FeedDemon, synchronized to NGES.
KnowNow 3 Enterprise Syndication Solution 3.1.8
ESS integrates several components for syndicating information from RSS and various enterprise sources. The core LiveServer captures, aggregates, and routes internal and external RSS feeds. ESS’s pleasant Web administration simplifies creating channels, subscribing users and groups to feeds, and managing permissions.
LiveAdapter, a unique feature of KnowNow, automatically transforms data from back-office systems -- such as databases or CRM applications -- into Web events, which are accessed as RSS or HTTP subscriptions. ESS delivers information to subscribers using SpeedReader (a zero-install Web client), plug-ins for Internet Explorer and FireFox, or a Deskbar that sits in the Windows taskbar.
I tested the hosted version of KnowNow 3, finding that its administration side was on par with the other two products. The tabbed interface, which persistently displays a folder tree of categories, is especially intuitive to navigate.
Creating RSS sources from any RSS or Atom feed just involves pointing to the URL and completing a simple form -- with most minor complaints found in the earlier version rectified. As part of creating these feeds, I assigned them to multiple categories -- for example, a travel policy was assigned to HR, news, and finance feeds. Yet you may not have much feed-setup work beyond in-house channels; ESS ships with popular free Moreover channels -- this company also provides premium real-time news and business feeds for a fee -- that are quickly added.