Here's a suggested improvement for the javaranch site:
Why don't you provide an RSS feed? Just like the java.sun.com and oracle web sites, you can easily publish a _summary_ of changes on javaranch in XML. This can be picked up by aggregator programs like AmphetaDesk and HotSheet, so that people can see all the updates from sites of interest on a single page.
Personally, I prefer to pick up RSS summaries than subscribe to email lists, since I can't trust a widely distributed email address and I don't want to administer elaborate, anti-spam measures. The XML from an RSS feed can do the same job as a mail list, but it can't be abused so easily. (In addition, since it's just XML I'm downloading, I could easily find other applications for the data.)
See http://www.disobey.com/amphetadesk/website_integration.html for a simple account of how to add this.
Originally posted by Paul Wheaton:
I think that's a damn good idea. I think once we get moved over to the new forum stuff and everything seems to be working well, you should bring this up again. Or even better ... Jim Yingst, do we have a list somewhere for "wanna have" features for the new forums?
I'm not so bothered about the forums - the important thing here is the use of RSS as an _alternative_ to the email newsletter. In extreme programming story terms:
"I want to read the titles of javaranch newsletter articles in an RSS feed SO THAT I don't have to maintain a throwaway mailing list email account."