February 2, 2005 5:20 PM PST

RSS feeds attract venture dollars

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task than it was five years ago," Alden said. "We think there's a social aspect to content. People we know and have affinities with can be a big component of helping us discover and analyze content."

Rojo expects to make money by selling contextual advertising and will make the sales pitch that its users have highly defined interests. It may charge for some premium services and also plans to private-label its service for corporate clients.

The start-up has filed an omnibus patent application, which it declined to discuss in detail, that describes the various aspects of its service.

Bloglines, a privately held start-up in Redwood City, Calif., went online in June 2003. It claims more than 200 million blog articles in a searchable database.

"Being able to find feeds is a real challenge," said Mark Fletcher, founder and CEO of Bloglines. "It's an embarrassment of riches out there, with millions of feeds. It's the same search problem you have throughout the rest of the Internet."

Bloglines takes a different approach than Rojo in that both its network and individual feed lists are open to general inspection and don't require invitations.

"Rojo went about it the wrong way," Fletcher said. "They have a closed system. We have an open system. So instead of only sharing with just friends, I can share with the world. People love that because it yields a vibrant, open community."

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Safari RSS
Overlooked in this article; the next version of Mac OS X (that is
10.4 Tiger) will come with Safari RSS, a web browser with an RSS
news reader built in: <a class="jive-link-external" href="http://www.apple.com/macosx/tiger/" target="_newWindow">http://www.apple.com/macosx/tiger/</a>
safari.html

Look out for Mac OS X Tiger some time in the first half of this
year, it's going to be great.
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