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Headlines Plugin

Show headline news in TWiki pages based on RSS and ATOM news feeds from external sites


This plugin displays RSS and ATOM feeds from news sites. Use it to build news portals that show headline news.

Note: Syndic8.com ( http://www.syndic8.com/ ) lists many RSS and ATOM feeds.

Syntax Rules


Parameter Explanation Default
"..." Source of RSS or ATOM feed; this can be an url (starting with http) or a web.topic location for internal feeds None; is required
href="..." (Alternative to above) N/A
refresh="60" Refresh rate in minutes for caching feed; "0" for no caching Global REFRESH setting
limit="12" Maximum number of items shown Global LIMIT setting
header="..." Header. May include these variables:
- $channeltitle, $title: title of channel (channel.title)
- $channellink, $link: link of channel (channel.link)
- $channeldescription, $description: description (channel.description)
- $channeldate, $date: publication date of the channel (channel.pubDate)
- $rights: copyrights of the channel (channel.copyright)
- $imagetitle: title text for site (image.title)
- $imagelink: link for site (image.link)
- $imageurl: URL of image (image.url)
- $imagedescription: description of image (image.description)
Global HEADER setting
format="..." Format of one item. May include these variables:
- $title: news item title (item.title)
- $link: news item link (item.link)
- $description: news item description (item.description)
- $date: the publication date (item.pubDate, item.date)
- $category: the article category (item.category)
Global FORMAT setting
touch="..." Touch (edit/save) topics if the feed has updates. Specify a comma-space delimited list of TopicNames or Web.TopicNames, such as "%TOPIC%, NewsLetter". Useful to send out newsletter using MailerContrib, showing new feeds since last newsletter. To update feeds, visit topics with feeds in regular intervals (using cron with wget or the like). N/A

The header and format parameters might also use variables rendering the dc, image and content namespace information. Note, that only bits of interest have been implemented so far and those namespaces might not be implemented fully yet.

Rendering the dc namespace

The following variables are extracting the dc namespace info, that could be used in header and format. Note that some of the variables are already used above. This is done by purpose to use different feeds with the same formatting parameters. If there's a conflict the non-dc tags have higher precedence, i.e. a <title> content </title> is preferred over <dc:title> content </dc:title>.

  • $title: channel/article title (dc:title)
  • $creator: channel creator (dc:creator)
  • $subject: subject text; this will also add an image according to the subject hash list, see above (dc:subject)
  • $description: ... (dc:description)
  • $publisher: the channel/article publisher (dc:publisher)
  • $contributor: ... (dc:contributor)
  • $date: ... (dc:date)
  • $type: ... (dc:type)
  • $format: ... (dc:format)
  • $identifier: ... (dc:identifier)
  • $source: ... (dc:source)
  • $language: ... (dc:language)
  • $relation: ... (dc:relation)
  • $coverage: ... (dc: coverage)
  • $rights: ... (dc: rights)

Rendering the image namespace

An image:item is converted into an <img> tag using the following mappings:

  • src: image url (rdf:about attribute of the image.item tag)
  • alt: image title (title)
  • width: image width (image:width)
  • height: image height image:height)

Rendering the content namespace

The variable $content is referring to the <content:encoding> content </content:encoding>.


Slashdot News


%HEADLINES{ "http://slashdot.org/slashdot.rdf" 
  header="*[[$link][$title]]:* $description" 
  format="$t* [[$link][$title]]"
to get the latest Slashdot news as a bullet list format:

HeadlinesPlugin ERROR: 500 SSL negotiation failed:

Business Opportunities Weblog


%HEADLINES{ "http://www.business-opportunities.biz/feed" limit="2" }%

to get the latest postings on the "Business Opportunities" weblog:

Thu, 20 Sep 2018 07:50:09 +0000
The original blog about business opportunities and business ideas for small business entrepreneurs
Thu, 20 Sep 2018 07:50:09 +0000 Laurie Bennett

Being profitable is what your business is all about, right? However, increasing your company’s profitability is easier said than done.

About 90% of all startups fail within the first five years of their operation, largely because they’re not profitable. However, if you have a good idea and you're willing to work hard, it is possible that you can make your business a success.

Here are six things you can do to increase your profits.


#1 Understand Your Profit Margin

Understanding your profit margin means that you know precisely how much time and money you're spending on a particular product. Therefore, you know whether you’re making a profit on that product. Once you understand the profit margin you can make adjustments to allow for more profitability.

To better understand your profit margin, answer the following questions:

  • Has your production cost increased?
  • Would people be willing to pay more for your product?
  • Are your competitors selling at a higher rate?

Answering these questions will help you to know if it might be possible for you to make some changes. For example, increasing the price might be profitable even if a price increase results in fewer sales.

Consider this example:

You sell pens for $5 each and make $1 on each sale. You are able to sell 1,000 units in a single month. Therefore, your profit is $1,000 that month.

The following month, you decide to push the price up to $6 for each pen. Now your profit on each unit is $2. However, sales fall to 700 units during that month. Still, your profit is $1,400. This makes your pens more profitable, despite the fact that you had fewer paying customers.

Nonetheless, you’ll need to make such decisions carefully. It’s quite possible, for instance, that you could lose a large number of customers and end up with a loss.



#2 Cater to Your More Profitable Clients

Especially in the service industry, some clients are more profitable than others.

Let's assume you run a day spa. Everyone who comes to your spa for a massage pays the same amount of money for your services. However, some of your clients come in more regularly.

Such loyal clients deserve your special attention. After all, they contribute a large portion to your spa’s profitability. Therefore, cater to them by offering loyalty programs and other such benefits.


profitable 300w" sizes="(max-width: 588px) 100vw, 588px" />


#3 Focus on Your More Profitable Products

Focus your efforts and energy on pushing your best-selling products or services to your clients. For example, consider how═Microsoft═promotes their products. They offer thousands of products. However, they seldom promote anything as much as they promote their operating system. So be like Microsoft:═Sell more of what brings you more money.


#4 Apply for a Loan

Taking out a loan at the opportune time can turn out to be the best thing you ever did. This is especially true if you are having difficulties in managing cash flow.

Use loan money to invest in new infrastructure. Alternatively, use money from a loan to market your products better or hire new employees. Perhaps you could even take on that big project you’ve been meaning to tackle. Any one of these actions could improve your bottom line.

However, be careful about applying for a loan. Ideally, look for loans that are easy to obtain and require no collateral. Moreover, only accept a loan if you are sure you'll be able to pay it back. Otherwise, you could jeopardize your company’s future.


#5 Consider Automating Your Processes

About 49% of companies currently use automation for generating leads. About 80% of those which do see an increase in successful leads. Most of them will tell you that automation reduces their costs. Therefore, it makes their businesses more profitable.

Use automation to optimize the shopping cart on your website. Also, use accounting software to automate accounting tasks such as invoicing. Automating your processes will require a large investment. However, it's an investment that will pay off in the long run.




#6 Improve Your Marketing Skills

No one will buy your products if they are not aware of them. Therefore, learn all you can about marketing, and consider it one of the most important aspects of running your business. Marketing is the only way to increase your customer base, after all. Get creative, learn from the masters, and consider using various marketing channels to improve your company’s sales-and its profitability.

The post 6 Things You Can Do to Make Your Business More Profitable appeared first on Business Opportunities.

Thu, 20 Sep 2018 07:47:01 +0000 Laurie Bennett

Businesses today must go the extra mile in order to stand out from the crowd. And there is one sure way to do that. That sure-fire way is marketing automation.



So, What Exactly Is Marketing Automation?

Simply put, automated marketing means that you use uniquely designed software to carry out marketing actions, well, automatically. For example, many businesses have automated some of their repetitive tasks. That is, you could automate email, text messaging, social media, and other actions you might initiate from your website.

There are several tools that you can use to automate your marketing. For example, according to the founder of Automate Your Brand, Eric Raio, ''Having a marketing automation system in place allows you to build relationships with your customers at scale. It gives you the freedom to work on your business.''


Why Should You Embrace Automated Marketing in Your Business?

There are three simple reasons why every business owner should be scrambling to automate their business.

1. Marketing Automation Equals Hefty Conversion Rates

Wouldn't it be great to have an automated system that would accurately target customers and transform skeptical ones into loyal and satisfied customers?

With an automated solution, you will be able to achieve exactly that.

Many B2C businesses welcome automation as the key to reducing their cart abandonment rate. They use automatically sent emails to alert customers who leave items in their carts. In the same way, businesses can automatically send out emails or reminders to customers to remind them of upcoming bookings or appointments.

Clearly then, automating your marketing can bring you sizable conversion rates.

2. Marketing Automation Will Reduce Your Workload

Imagine an affiliate marketing business that has to manually post every advertisement. In the beginning, it is perhaps easy to schedule postings. After all, they are dealing with only a few advertisements at that stage. However, with time and the growth of their business, this company will definitely need to find ways to automate their process.

Marketing automation significantly reduces the workload for growing businesses. It gives business owners a chance to focus on other key aspects of growing a successful business.

3. Automate Your Company’s Loyalty Program

You can program your marketing automation software to gather customer information. For instance, it can collect email addresses and phone numbers as a matter of course. You won’t even have to think about it, once you’ve set it up. Thereafter, you can automatically send out customized deals and incentives.

Moreover, it’s only to your benefit to boost your loyalty programs in whatever way you can. That’s because loyalty programs help to create customer advocates. These super customers will in turn market your business for you, through powerful word-of-mouth marketing.


Automating Your Marketing Will Be Easier Than You Think

Although it might seem intimidating, it’s actually pretty easy to get started with marketing automation. What matters most is creating an automated system that uniquely caters to the needs of your customers and your business.

The post 3 Reasons Why Your Business Needs Marketing Automation appeared first on Business Opportunities.

Plugin Settings

Plugin settings are stored as preferences settings. Do not change the settings here, they are here only for illustration purposes showing the default values. Define the settings in Main.TWikiPreferences. For example, to customize the HEADLINESPLUGIN_USERAGENTNAME setting, add a * Set HEADLINESPLUGIN_USERAGENTNAME = ... bullet in Main.TWikiPreferences.

  • Refresh rate in minutes for cached feeds. Set to 0 to disable caching:

  • Maximum number of items shown:

  • Use LWP::UserAgent if set to 1, or fallback to TWiki's internal getUrl() method if set to 0:

  • Timeout fetching a feed using the LWP::UserAgent:

  • Name of user agent:
    • Set HEADLINESPLUGIN_USERAGENTNAME = TWikiHeadlinesPlugin/2011-07-08

  • Default header: (variables are explained in the syntax rules)
      * Set HEADLINESPLUGIN_HEADER = <div class="headlinesChannel"><div class="headlinesLogo"><img src="$imageurl" alt="$imagetitle" border="0" />%BR%</div><div class="headlinesTitle">$n---+!! <a href="$link">$title</a></div><div class="headlinesDate">$date</div><div class="headlinesDescription">$description</div><div class="headlinesRight">$rights</div></div>

  • Default format of one item: (variables are explained in the syntax rules)
      * Set HEADLINESPLUGIN_FORMAT = <div class="headlinesArticle"><div class="headlinesTitle"><a href="$link">$title</a></div>$n<span class="headlinesDate">$date</span> <span class="headlinesCreator"> $creator</span> <span class="headlinesSubject"> $subject </span>$n<div class="headlinesText"> $description</div></div>

  • Values taken from configure: (only supported if CPAN:LWP is installed)
    • $TWiki::cfg{PROXY}{HOST} - proxy host, such as "proxy.example.com";
    • $TWiki::cfg{PROXY}{PORT} - proxy port, such as "8080";
    • $TWiki::cfg{PROXY}{SkipProxyForDomains} - domains excluded from proxy, such as "intra.example.com, bugs.example.com";

Style Sheets

The default HEADER and FORMAT settings use the following styles. See the style.css file defining the default CSS properties (indentation illustrates enclosure).

  • headlinesRss: output of the HeadlinesPlugin (div)
    • headlinesChannel: channel header (div)
      • headlinesLogo: channel logo (div)
      • headlinesTitle: channel title (div)
      • headlinesDate: channel date (div)
      • headlinesDescription: channel description (div)
      • headlinesRight: channel copyright (div)
    • headlinesArticle: one news item (div)
      • headlinesTitle: article title (div)
      • headlinesDate: article date (span)
      • headlinesCreator: author of article (span)
      • headlinesSubject: subect category of the article (span)
      • headlinesText: article text (div)

Plugin Installation Instructions

Note: You do not need to install anything on the browser to use this plugin. The following instructions are for the administrator who installs the plugin on the TWiki server.

  • For an automated installation, run the configure script and follow "Find More Extensions" in the in the Extensions section.

  • Or, follow these manual installation steps:
    • Download the ZIP file from the Plugins home (see below).
    • Unzip HeadlinesPlugin.zip in your twiki installation directory. Content:
      File: Description:
      data/TWiki/HeadlinesPlugin.txt Plugin topic
      pub/TWiki/HeadlinesPlugin/style.css Default CSS
      lib/TWiki/Plugins/HeadlinesPlugin.pm Plugin Perl module
      lib/TWiki/HeadlinesPlugin/Core.pm Plugin core
    • Set the ownership of the extracted directories and files to the webserver user.
    • Make sure the dependencies listed in the table below are resolved.
      Digest::MD5>=2.33Required. Download from CPAN:Digest::MD5
      LWP::UserAgent>=5.803Optional. Download from CPAN:LWP::UserAgent

  • Plugin configuration and testing:
    • Run the configure script, enable the plugin in the Plugins section
    • Configure the plugin: See plugin settings above.
    • Test if the installation was successful: See example above.

Plugin Info

  • One line description, shown in the TextFormattingRules topic:
    • Set SHORTDESCRIPTION = Show headline news in TWiki pages based on RSS and ATOM news feeds from external sites

Plugin Author: TWiki:Main.PeterThoeny, TWiki:Main.MichaelDaum
Copyright: © 2002-2011 Peter Thoeny, Twiki, Inc.
© 2005-2007 Michael Daum http://wikiring.de
License: GPL (GNU General Public License)
Plugin Version: 2011-07-17
Change History:  
2011-07-17: TWikibug:Item6764: Add VarHEADLINES variable documentation; doc improvements; setting NO_PREFS_IN_TOPIC
2011-07-08: TWikibug:Item6725: Change global package variables from "use vars" to "our"
2010-05-16: TWikibug:Item6433: More doc improvements
2010-04-25: TWikibug:Item6433: Doc fix: Changing TWIKIWEB to SYSTEMWEB
2010-02-27: TWikibug:Item6313: Fixed bug in ATOM feed with <link ...></link> instead of <link ... /> -- Peter Thoeny
2009-09-30: fixed bug in lastBuildDate of feeds affecting touch parameter functionality -- Peter Thoeny
2009-08-29: added touch parameter -- Peter Thoeny
12 Feb 2009: {PROXY}{HOST} supports domain with and without protocol -- Peter Thoeny
06 Feb 2009: added {PROXY}{SkipProxyForDomains} configure setting, added USERAGENTNAME plugin setting -- Peter Thoeny
11 Dec 2008: added {PROXY}{HOST} and {PROXY}{PORT} configure settings -- Peter Thoeny
13 Sep 2007: fixed parsing of content:encoded
23 Jul 2006: improved atom parser; if a posting has no title default to 'Untitled'
26 Apr 2006: added lazy compilation
10 Feb 2006: packaged using the TWiki:Plugins/BuildContrib; minor fixes
03 Feb 2006: off-by-one: limit="n" returned n+1 articles; make FORMAT and HEADER format strings more robust
23 Jan 2006: released v2.00
05 Dec 2005: internal feed urls must be absolute
02 Dec 2005: added web.topic shorthand for internal feeds
29 Nov 2005: fixed CDATA handling
21 Nov 2005: added ATOM support; extended RSS support; added dublin core support; added content support; optionally using LWP to fetch feeds to follow redirections; corrected CPAN dependencies ; recoding special chars from html integer to entity encoding to increase browser compatibility; added css support; use getWorkArea() if available
11 May 2005: TWiki:Main.WillNorris: added DevelopBranch compatability
31 Oct 2004: Fixed taint issue by TWiki:Main.AdrianWeiler; small performance improvement
29 Oct 2004: Fixed issue of external caching if mod_perl or SpeedyCGI is used
02 Aug 2002: Implemented caching of feeds, thanks to TWiki:Main/RobDuarte
11 Jun 2002: Initial version (V1.000)
Perl Version: 5.8
TWiki:Plugins/Benchmark: GoodStyle 100%, FormattedSearch 99.5%, HeadlinesPlugin 94%
Plugin Home: http://TWiki.org/cgi-bin/view/Plugins/HeadlinesPlugin
Feedback: http://TWiki.org/cgi-bin/view/Plugins/HeadlinesPluginDev
Appraisal: http://TWiki.org/cgi-bin/view/Plugins/HeadlinesPluginAppraisal

Related Topics: VarHEADLINES, TWikiPlugins, AdminDocumentationCategory, TWikiPreferences

Topic revision: r5 - 17 Jul 2011 - TWikiContributor
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