FeedCycle enables you to serialise your feed content, whenever a person subscribes to your FeedCycle they will always get the first installment of content (even though currently your feed might be up to it’s 5 installment of content), in a way it is chronological ordering of content.
This is a great idea for blogs where each post is a chapter in a linear type book, your blog book maybe be up to chapter 5, but whoever subscribes today will have to read chapter 1 first. Then the rest of the feed content is scheduled in set installments.
Jim Moore’s OPML blog could have an alternative feed, one that delivers content in chronological order and at scheduled intervals, eg. daily, weekly…but as you will see further on, this is not possible, as you have to blog within FeedCycle.
When you create a FeedCycle feed it also is promoted on their website, and since you tag each feed, you can explore FeedCycle’s by author topics.
I really like this idea of not using RSS in the traditional sense of latest updates, it is such a perfect idea for a manual or learning guide or a workshop, see a FeedCycle on An Introduction to Sustainability and The Market-Led Organisation (this one seems like a great idea for distance learning).
As you can see for each FeedCycle you have a webspace that has the first installment, a feed, a button to promote your feed, tags, publisher, duration and frequency, copyright, description, related FeedCycles, etc…
NOTE: You can’t seem to read all episodes of a series from the webpage, and you can’t click on the publisher to see all their FeedCycles.
You could also re-syndicate a FeedCycle feed into a widget or use it as the main feed for a blog via RSS to HTML, this way people can read it on the web if they don’t like using an RSS Reader…don’t forget you could even convert the feed into email installments (even better burn the feed at Feedburner in order for supreme metrics and also use the included email service).
To add posts to your FeedCycle feed you post content from within FeedCycle, there is also an option to import latest posts via an RSS feed (kind of like an alternative to cutting and pasting in posts you already have in your blog). This option is handy if you already have written some great posts that you want to include in your FeedCycle.
So now in hindsight I could go through a selection of past blog posts and cut ‘n paste them into a FeedCycle and promote that FeedCycle feed in my blog. If a recent blog post was a suitable episode for this FeedCycle I could then cut ‘n paste it in…the next section asks if this can be automated (without the repetition of cut ‘n paste).
Integrate into your blog??
An obstacle to me seems that you have to blog the content from within the FeedCycle website.
What about being able to blog within your own blog as usual, but certain posts can belong to a FeedCycle feed.
Every 5th post you make might be part of a series, so somehow you would have to mark it so, so it gets included in the FeedCycle feed…all your others posts are to be ignored by your FeedCycle feed.
Each post as usual can belong to a category and be assigned tags, in this case these posts stand out from all the other posts on this blog as they belong to a series of episodes, so you might choose to assign an additonal unique category/tag, eg. Office 2.0 series.
Now a category feed could be provided to just follow these posts, but that would be just a normal functioning feed, where you get the latest updates.
IT|Redux’s series of posts in Office 2.0 don’t require you to read the 1st post in order to understand the 2nd post, etc…but if this was the case then a FeedCycle feed for these series of blog posts would be more appropriate than a normal RSS category feed.
But how can you include a selection of your blog posts into a FeedCycle feed, maybe you could tag these posts, and FeedCycle would look for any posts on your blog with this tag, just like tag aggregating/harversting services like Edgeio.
If I had multiple FeedCycle feeds in my blog, I would have to make these tags unique to the series.
People visiting this blog could subscribe to just these episodes…even when the series is finished, if someone subscribes to the FeedCycle feed they will have to read the 1st episode first, followed by the others.
DIY FeedCycle blog
The only way a whole blog can have a FeedCycle feed is being re-syndicated with RSS to HTML.
This means you grab your FeedCycle feed, turn it into HTML using a service like Feed Digest and put this code into a a brand new blog. Then you can also promote your FeedCycle feed on this blog by embedding the handy FeedCycle feed Chicklet.
NOTE: make sure you hide the native feed you get with this brand new blog, ie. delete the RSS icon or link, and in the template also delete the auto-subscribe code (in fact replace it with the FeedCycle feed for auto-subscribing).
Now you are ready, just do your blogging from within FeedCycle, and the content will appear in this brand new blog, if people subscribe to the feed of this brand new blog, they will get a surprise when they realise that this content is delivered in episodes starting from number one, and delivered by a schedule.
For more on blog posts belonging to an episode see my post on datablogging.
Here’s some ideas.
Tony Hirst has more.
Peter from Feed Digest also had this idea.