Awasu » 2015 » February
Saturday 28th February 2015 9:09 AM [Tutorial]

So, one of our long-time users has been asking about how RSS tracks authors, which reminded me that I've been meaning to talk about this insanely cool feature of Awasu that I'm sure not many people know about.

RSS feed items typically come with metadata associated with them, like who the author was, what time they were published, etc. There are also non-standard things like licensing details, geocodes, information about who's commented or linked to the blog post. Not only is Awasu able to slurp up all this yummy data, it doesn't even have to be a standard type of metadata. You can even embed your own custom metadata in a feed and Awasu will be able to extract it - awesome if you're working in an enterprise environment.

One of the things you can do with this metadata is include it in the item pane, the list of feed items that appears in the top (by default) of a channel's window. Here's a screenshot of a channel I have using the <foreshadowing> new and improved plugin that monitors email accounts </foreshadowing>, with the email's sender and timestamp in the item pane.

Setting this up is pretty easy:

  • Open the channel's Properties dialog and on the first tab (Channel), click on the Item pane button.
  • Click on the green plus icon, to add a new column.
  • Enter the metadata value you want to show in the column. The most commonly-used ones are provided in the droplist, but you can enter anything you want.
  • Then enter the name of the column.

And ta da! Awasu will now show the relevant metadata in the item pane.

This is a pretty nice feature, and Awasu is not limited to just showing these values in the item pane, they can be included in the browser pane as well, which means they will show up in reports, or emails. Post in the forums if you need a hand sending any of this stuff up.