"What's Hot" Feed

The stories that appear on the scouting.org home page (underneath the headline "What's Hot") are available as an XML formatted feed, which can be read by various software and may be syndicated into other Scouting Web sites.

Feed Format

The news feed is formatted thus:

The channel information contains details about the feed itself and is relevent only to describing the feed itself:

  • title - text describing the feed, which should very rarely change
  • link - URL of the BSA home page
  • description - text describing the feed, also semi-permanent
  • lastBuildDate - a date (UNIX format) indicating the last time the feed was compiled. Note that this is a dynamic feed, so the "last build date" will always reflect the current date and time.

The item information contains the content of each announcement.

  • title - The title of the article (used as link text). This text should never be more than 40 characters long.
  • description - A lengthier description. This text should always be between 150 and 250 characters in length
  • link - A link for more details. This link will often load the page in the context of the BSA's frameset, so it's best to target any links to the full window or a new window.
  • enclosure - The URL of an image (100 pixels square) to accompany the item.

How To Subscribe/Republish

Unfortunately, it is not possible to provide a single set of instructions for subscribing to or republishing the newsfeed - you will need to refer to the documentation for the software or service you are using to access news feeds. Once you have reveiwed the documentation, it should be evident how to use the information above (about field names and content) in conjunction with the software or service of your choice.

Neither can we recommend a specific product for doing this - use a search engine to find "how-to" articles or reviews of various products. For programmers looking to write XML/RSS software, there are also a number of references online for doing so - a good start would be the WWW Consortium site (www.w3c.org).