What We Do:

We can help you become an explanation specialist.

Common Craft Membership

Start your life as an explainer with Common Craft Membership. Prices start at just $49 per year. It provides:

Cut-Outs:

Make your presentation or video remarkable with 800+ digital images in Common Craft Style, plus Know-How resources for using them.

Download a Sample

Ready-made Videos:

Educate others with 50+ ready-made video explanations that you can embed on your website or download for offline use.

Test embedding a video

We Wrote the Book on Explanation

The Art of Explanation

A book by Lee LeFever

The Art of Explanation will help you become an explainer.

Learn More

Need a Video for Your Product?

The Explainer Network

Our network of custom video producers can create short, animated videos that make your product or service easier to understand.

Find a Producer

Video Transcript

The Internet has problems. Technorati says there are 50 million weblogs, and as you can see, it's going up. This is overwhelming. Today's show is about a new and efficient way to keep up with all this cool stuff that's happening on the Internet.

I'm going to talk about two ways that you can keep up with what's happening on the Web. There's the old slow way - Boo. Then, there's the new and fast way - Yay! Here's the difference between the new and the old way.

This is you, and here are your favorite websites. You log on to your computer, and you're looking for something new. You go out to your favorite blogs. Anything new? No. You go out to your favorite news sites. Anything new? Nope. Every time you look for something new and its not there, you've wasted valuable time. This is the old way.

Now, let's consider the new and fast way, which is simply taking these arrows and turning them the other direction. This means the new things from blogs and new things from your news sites come to you instead. It's like Netflix compared to the video store.

So, what we're talking about is using a single website that becomes your home for reading all the new stuff that's coming from your favorite websites. There are two steps to getting started.

The first step is you need a home for reading new posts. This is a website called a reader. It is free and all you need is an account. I use a site called Google Reader. It looks like this. My favorite sites are listed on the left, and on the right I can scroll through all the new posts from my favorite sites in a single place. So, to complete step one, you need to sign up for a reader. Google Reader, Bloglines, Newsgator, My Yahoo! are good places to start.

Step number two, is to set up a connection between your reader and your favorite websites. Setting up these connections is called subscribing, and it's really important. Nearly every blog and news site offers the ability for you to subscribe so updates in these sites show up here in your reader.

To set up these subscriptions, you just need to look for funny little icons. This is the standard one using the standard orange color. You may also see these. These little icons say, "Hey look! Subscribe to me! I can save you time!" Once you find one of these buttons on your favorite site, click on it and the page that appears will give you everything you need to subscribe.

After you click that button, one of two types of pages will appear. This is one that provides one click access to subscribing in your reader. The other page you're likely to see looks like this - with code on it. If you see this page, copy the address at the top of the page, go to your reader and look for a link that says "Add Subscription" or "Add Feed." Click on that, and paste the address into your reader.

So, once you've added your subscriptions and the connection is there, new posts begin arriving in your reader and you'll see why this is the new, faster way to read the web. It's addictive, so be careful!

A quick recap. There are two things you need to do. Number one is go sign up for a reader. Number two, go to your favorite websites, click on the icon and subscribe.

 

What it teaches

This video introduces RSS as a way to subscribe to websites and save time on the Web. An "old vs. new" theme illustrates how RSS differs from visiting web sites independently, including:

  • The new and old ways of reading news on the web
  • An introduction to RSS Readers (using Google Reader as an example)
  • How to identify and subscribe to an RSS feed
  • What to expect when using an RSS reader

Features of Common Craft Membership

We wrote the book on explanation.

Learn More

 

Who uses Common Craft?

Businesses and schools, large and small, in over 50 countries enlighten and motivate with Common Craft explanations.

Explainer Network Image

Common Craft Custom Videos

We can help you get a custom video that explains your product or service. 

Contact Us

 

Question Graphic

Still have questions?

Go to FAQAsk Common Craft

Get new video alerts by email!