Newsfeeds, particularly RSS are frequently touted as being capable of replacing the trade press as a news source. With the launch of Yahoo pipes, there are now powerful tools to process these feeds. At Napier, we thought we’d try to create our own FPGA newswire, and found out things are not quite as easy as they may seem.

The first problem is that many companies don’t yet provide RSS feeds for their press releases. No problem – we just took the RSS feed for that supplier from ElectronicsTalk. We also cheated and used sites such as EDA Cafe and PLD DesignLine to get news from EDA tools vendors, and used the filtering tools to select stories specific to the FPGA market to make the pipe design manageable.

Yahoo pipes was a little tempremental at times, and the deduplication filter only works if the titles are unchanged, but the end result actually worked quite well, with the output available here, with an RSS feed here. The feed isn’t perfect by any means, and we found we needed to use editorially-driven sites to get comprehensive coverage of the industry, so we don’t see this technology replacing editors any time soon. In fact, we believe that the best applications will aggregate news from several online publications: ultimately driving more traffic to online magazines, rather than moving users away from them. Contact Napier to talk to us about our vision of how the online electronics media will develop.

[note that Yahoo Pipes was shut down at the end of September 2015. The editors won!]