How To Get Connected Using Tiny Tiny RSS

I have finally, I think, found a solution to all our feed problems: Tiny Tiny RSS. I have also discovered that if you want something done right, you have to host it yourself. So, we have a new part of the site, our Tiny Tiny RSS reader. This is workhorse software that should suit our purposes, but it is not super slickly user friendly. Have some patience with this process. I’m sorry it’s not easier.

{Update: Apparently, this is not the end of the story. If you have difficulty with the OPML/feed importing process described below, try the alternative, “batch subscribe” process. Also, please be aware that, try as I might, I have not yet figured out how to get the “Feelings and Networks Network” link here on the left to update any faster than very slowly. What you see there will likely be out of date. Best to set up RSS as described here, and to use the new, streamlined subscription process.}

I have created accounts for all of you in our install of Tiny Tiny RSS. Your username will be your last name; your temporary password will be your accessID.

Once you log in the first time, you’ll need to do a few things.

First of all, please change your password right away. From the Actions menu at the top right, select Preferences:

tt-rss-actions

This will bring you to the General preferences pane. Above the Preferences pane, you will see Personal data / Authentication:

tt-rss-prefs

Click on that, and you’ll get the Personal data / Authentication pane:

tt-rss-pass-1

If you wish, you can put your full name in there or change your email to a preferred account. Please change your password, and please consider using a very strong password à la XKCD.

Once you have changed your password, you will need to subscribe to the class blogs. Because (sigh) the plugin I’m using to aggregate all our blogs into a single feed appears not to be working, we’ll need you to subscribe separately to all 29 feeds. Fortunately, you can import the feed subscriptions I have set up in my account.

To import these feeds: In the preferences screen, select the Feeds tab at the top:

tt-rss-pass-2

This will bring you to a list of Feeds you’re subscribed to. {NB: From here, you should probably skip the rest of this page, and flip over to the alternative method.} Below the Feeds pane, you will see a pane called OPML:

tt-rss-feeds

OPML is a file format that allows you to transfer feed subscription data, and you can do it on this screen. An OPML file that includes the all the class blogs is here. You can import it here:

tt-rss-opml

Before you can upload an OMPL file, you’ll need to download one. Ours is here. Either download this file by right clicking the link and saving it, or open the link (it should open an XML file that looks like all kinds of gobbledygook) and save it to your computer (File > Save As…) in a convenient location. (Say, your Downloads folder.) The filename should be feelings.opml, or possibly feelings.opml.xml. Either should be fine.

Then, click on the “Choose File” button in the OMPL pane, and navigate to, and select, the file you just downloaded.

This will then import all the feeds into your Tiny Tiny RSS account in a category called The Feelings and Networks Network. If you click on your Feeds pref pane, you should see a bunch of entries. At first, this may appear as a list of a lot of [unknown]‘s, but our little server that could is churning through the information.

If you then click on the “Exit preferences” link at the top left, you’ll be taken back to your initial screen with all your feeds—which is what you will see whenever you log in. Congratulations! Each time you log in, you’ll see the list of feeds.

Nota bene: The default theme for Tiny Tiny RSS isn’t exactly easy on the eyes. I recommend changing it. In the general preferences pane, you can scroll down to the “Themes” section, and select “feedly.css.” It’s a much nicer thing to look at.