Ok first things first. By the way, skip the first bit if you are a geek. The term “planet” in this case is used to refer to a website or weblog like site that gathers RSS feeds from several unique seperate blogs (or anything else that has an RSS/Atom feed) and puts them all in one place. It was named after Planet which is the software used to create it – though there are other alternatives such as FeedJack, Moonmoon and even WordPress with some tweaking can handle it. It looks like a community or multi user weblog and the all the latest posts are from the latest updated weblogs whose RSS Feed it subscribes to. It in turn often has an RSS Feed that you can subscribe that includes all of these updates. Quite often these blogs share a similar topic or theme in common.
Let’s say that you are someone looking for a continual stream of information on a certain topic. Say you want to keep up with what’s occuring in Sri Lanka from the blogger’s point of view. Well, you would find a site called Kottu.org where you could subscribe to the feed and everytime a Sri Lankan blogger updated, you would know and be able to read their post.
If you are a blogger, this sort of thing is invaluable. Half my hits come from referred sites – ie. sites that link to yours. If you are banking on people reading your stuff online, clicking on your ads or buying something online via your site, you want a lot of hits coming through. If you find places to place your RSS Feed you are opening yourself up to a lot more people. One of the best places would be a planet in that case. So you find all the planet sites that are relevant to you – planets for blogs in your area, or your topic, or your subject matter and so on. Sounds easy right?
Wrong. It is easy, yes – once you find the damn things that is. It is very hard to find planets on the internet despite it being cyberspace. (Yes, sorry that was a very bad joke, I apologize). You can call them RSS aggregators, feed aggregators, community aggregators but while you will find a few, they will very likely not be ones you can use or submit your RSS Feed to.
See, most of the planet sites are being used as informal meeting rooms for developers working on all sorts of computer programs and software. It’s something that hasn’t quite hit the mainstream yet in that sense but you know that only means if you can’t find a planet that suits you, you can just create one yourself. If you have the time that it is. It runs itself but you have to find the initial weblogs that blog on that particular topic and add them before it will do so. And you have to let people know it is out there so that they can use it and thereby you have an audience.
As far as results are concerned, it is fast and it is targeted marketing. You join planets that are relevant to your blogging topic and people look for planets that are about the topic they want to find information on. It works well – you get the people who most likely to be interested in what you write about.
I was lucky to find Kottu.org. So in the spirit of perhaps discovering a few more planets I can submit my RSS Feed to and enabling you out there to find one that fits your blogging niche, topic or location, I have decided to hunt down all the planets I can find and list them here. For you. Links and all.
This list will grow over time no doubt. There is already a site termed the planet index but the process of updating it seems to be rather slow. They have 900 + planet sites in the queue to be added and today they got six more. So in the hopes of speeding it up or providing a service to you out there who might be tempted to try this out as a marketing tool, you will find the list below. It’s listed in categories – so please do keep reading down. Please feel free to send me any links so I can put them up here.
PLANET SITE LIST:
COMPUTERS, INTERNET, SOFTWARE, I.T., OPEN SOURCE & PROGRAMMING:
Semantic Focus … Python … Python … MySQL … OS Commerce … freedesktop … GStreamer … Jabber … KDE … PostgreSQL … Plone … IM … Xfce … Identity … Geospatial … Parrot … Maemo … Hula … PySoy … SOFTWARE (General) … CLAM … Asterisk … Drupal … Web Internationalization … PEAR … Irish Linux Users … PlanetGeek … Planet Google … Planet NetBeans … Planet ClassPath … Java … Java Planet … Perl … Mono Project … .NET … Lisp … PHP … Ubuntu … Debian … Linux Chix Live … SUSE … Gentoo … Ars Technica … Lug Radio … Fedora (no not the hat) … BSD … Kernel … Mandriva … Foresight Linux … Mozilla … GNOME … Apache … OpenOffice … Solaris … HCI … Nanotechnology … Mobile … Technology (General) … Voidspace … Firedrop … DevelUY … Planet SUN (SUN Microsystems) … GNOME (Chinese) … Debian (French) … FOSS (Cyprus & Greece) … Debian (Hong Kong) … Linux (Macedonia) … Malaysian Open Source … Cape Linux Users Group …
POLITICS, PHILOSOPHY & RELIGION:
BUSINESS, FINANCE & ECONOMY:
ARTS & ENTERTAINMENT:
SCIENCES, MEDICAL & HEALTH:
RECREATION, SHOPPING, HOBBIES, SPORTS & PETS:
LOCATIONS: AUSTRALIA & PACIFIC:
LOCATIONS: EUROPE & MEDITERRANEAN:
… Irish Linux Users Group … Geek Dinner Belgium … GroenLinks, Dutch Green Party … French Canadian Expats In Europe … University of Glamorgan … Planet Grep … Debian (French) … FOSS (Cyprus & Greece) … Linux (Macedonia) … Politica Nacional (Portugal) … Gnuheter (Sweden) …
LOCATIONS: MIDDLE EAST:
… Planet Arabeyes …
LOCATIONS: NORTH AMERICA & CANADA:
LOCATIONS: LATIN & SOUTH AMERICA:
… Devel UY …