How to Fix the RSS Feed

How to Fix the RSS Feed Hates Its Users

Update 2: Dilbert support has been removed due to current events relating to its author.
Update 1: Yahoo Pipes is shutting down. As a result, I started a new software project to replace it. The feeds are updated below.
Bad RSS Feed with No Pictures
Bad RSS Feed with No Pictures recently messed up their web comic RSS feed that I use to read the comic every day. They did this so that you have to click through to the website
to read each and every comic. All you can see is what’s to the right here.

Penny-Arcade did this quite a while back too, and I’ve been using someone’s Yahoo Pipe that fixes this same problem unfortunately this pipe no longer worked anyway and is replaced below. It just pulls the comic strip images from the page and displays it instead. I never dug into how it worked or Yahoo Pipes at all.

Yahoo Pipes is pretty awesome. It lets you just drag and drop things and connect them to arrange a workflow. I’m a developer, but I don’t think you have to be to use Pipes.

Using the Penny-Arcade one as an example, I rigged up two versions of the feed.

Using my Google App Engine hosted new software project, I’ve replaced and added new feeds below. The feeds auto-update every 2 hours and the service serves cached copies, so it should be extremely fast compared to the old pipes feeds.

What It Looks Like Now With These Modified Feeds

Much Better RSS Feed with Pictures

I no longer use The Old Reader. I now use NewsBlur and I pay for a premium subscription. I find it to be the best news reader for serious RSS users now. You can follow me there.

Now you get comics back the way they used to be (including images) and don’t have to link out to the site to read it. You can click the title in your feed reader to open the comic’s page (for discussion or other purposes).

Author: Chris Benard

Chris Benard is a software developer in the Dallas area specializing in payments processing, medical claims processing, and Windows/Web services.