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What Does RSS Stand For?

Rowdy Slacker Surfers? Red Super Slushies? Random Shooting Stars? No, RSS actually stands for Really Simple Syndication – an XML-based format for sharing and distributing Web content. In layman's terms, RSS allows you to subscribe to a "news feed" from your favorite Web site (you know it's the Library of Congress) and receive automatic updates from that site as they become available. The Library's new RSS feeds are available from key content pages within its extensive Web site – just look for the little orange button. You can also access feeds from a central RSS Web page.

Woman using vast online resources of Library of Congress The Main Reading Room of the Library of Congress, Washington, D.C.

Library of Congress feeds include News, Upcoming Events, New on the Web, New Webcasts, News from the John W. Kluge Center and What's New in Science Reference. Feeds from the U.S. Copyright Office include Web Site Updates, NewsNet, Federal Register Notices and Current Legislation.

In an effort to be as accommodating and user-friendly as possible, the Library has added other new technologies for our cyberpatrons: new search tools for the Library and THOMAS Web sites.

The new metasearch tool is kind of a one-stop shop for the Library's vast resources. Users type in a keyword and relevant hits are displayed in one place, with results coming from Exhibitions, Webcasts at the Library of Congress, American Memory, the Learning Page, the Prints and Photographs Online Catalog and other sections of the site. Previously, you would have had to perform at least three individual search queries on separate pages and segments of the Library's Web site, all while taking the chance that those pages held information relevant to your search!

The new search tool for THOMAS works in much the same way. Those needing information on Congress, whether past or current, can search the entire site from one single point and receive results from the Congressional Record, committee reports, presidential nominations and treaties.

A. Woman using vast online resources of Library of Congress. Photographer Michaela McNichol. 2006. Reproduction Information: Not available for reproduction.

B. The Main Reading Room of the Library of Congress, Washington, D.C. Jim Higgins. Reproduction Information: Not available for reproduction.