Headlines Plugin


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/ ) is a good site listing many RSS feeds.

Syntax Rules


Parameter Explanation Default
"..." source of RSS 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. Can 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. Can 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

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. Nnote, that some of the variables are already used above. This is done by purpose to use different feeds with the same formating parameters. If there's a conflict the non-dc tags have higher precedence, i.e. a <title> content </title> is prefered 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 refering to the <content:encoding> content </content:encoding>.


Slashdot News


  header="*[[$link][$title]]:* $description" 
  format="$t* [[$link][$title]]"
to get the latest Slashdot news as a bullet list format:

Business Opportunities Weblog


%HEADLINES{"http://www.business-opportunities.biz/feed" limit="3"}%

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

Wed, 21 Mar 2018 17:20:37 +0000
The original blog about business opportunities and business ideas for small business entrepreneurs
Wed, 21 Mar 2018 05:48:25 +0000 Bizop Team

Want to Become a Smart Shopper? A Price Comparison App Will Help

Imagine that after a long day of running your business, you step into your kitchen to find your refrigerator making strange sounds. What’s more, a large, unsightly puddle spreads out from under it over your kitchen floor.

You check to see what's wrong. You unplug it and make a casserole with the perishable foods. Then you try to turn into a smart shopper with what’s left of your day. You start looking for a replacement.


First, You Go Online

If you’re like most Americans, the first thing you do is check your phone or laptop to see what your options are. You check to see how much each one is likely to cost.

Most shoppers still spend most of their shopping dollars at brick-and-mortar stores. However, e-commerce is by far the fastest growing sector of the retail economy. Consumers spend billions of dollars online every day. Even when they don't purchase a product from a retailer's website, they are likely to use the information on that website to help them make an informed decision.


Because It’s Convenient, That’s Why

The convenience of online shopping is reshaping the retail landscape in dramatic ways. For one thing, as more and more retailers migrate to the Internet, consumers’ options have skyrocketed.

For example, you need to buy that replacement refrigerator as soon as possible. Therefore, you don't have time to wait until your ideal model is on sale.

However, the more you look, the more bewildering the alternatives look to you. You see something for one price on one retailer's website. Then you find the same refrigerator offered at a different price on another website.

This makes you wonder: What if there is an even better deal out there? With so many choices available, how does a smart shopper make a decision? How will you compare prices on thousands of products across hundreds of different websites?




You Need a Price Comparison App

This is where price comparison apps like Yroo come in. A price comparison app can save a shopper time by aggregating the prices on millions of products. In this way, you’ll be able to find the best deals available across thousands of retailer websites.

Price comparison apps are not themselves retailers. They simply serve as a bridge between the shopper who is looking for a particular product and the outlets that are selling them.

A price comparison app will allow you to cut through the noise. That is, you’ll find the best deals available at any given time. And you’ll also have a choice about which retailer you buy from.

For example, you might find two retailers who are offering the same product at the same price. However, perhaps you are a member of a customer loyalty program at one but not the other. In this case, you have the option of buying from your preferred retailer.


Price Comparison Apps Harvest Data…

In the process of aggregating prices from different websites, price comparison apps harness vast amounts of data. What’s more, some of the more sophisticated apps can help you become a smarter shopper.

Price comparison apps can be a huge help when you need to find the cheapest option as quickly as possible. Further, some of them also offer price-tracking features. This innovation will allow you to see how a price has changed over time, allowing for more informed decision-making.

That is, if you can see that a price has been steadily dropping, perhaps you will decide to hold off on your purchase. You might want to wait until it stabilizes to guarantee that you are buying it at the lowest possible price.


…to Save You Time and Money

In addition to saving time and money, price comparison apps also help you to stay ahead of your shopping list. You can mark particular products as your favorites. Then, you’ll receive alerts when they go on sale.

You can also share your shopping journey with friends and family. This feature can come in particularly handy before holidays and birthdays, especially when you’re shopping for a gift for your spouse or partner.



You, Too, Can Become a Smart Shopper

Everyone knows that being a smart shopper means researching brands and following deals. However, the sheer abundance offered by the Internet makes this task more difficult.

However, that same Internet has also given rise to tools like price comparison apps. These apps can help you to navigate your options and find the best deal for you.

In 2017, e-commerce sales grew by 15.8% to $452.8 billion. Therefore, it should surprise no one that as e-commerce explodes, price comparison sites are blooming. Now, more than ever, a smart shopper like you can get the most out of the online shopping experience.

The post Want to Become a Smart Shopper? A Price Comparison App Will Help appeared first on Business Opportunities.

Wed, 21 Mar 2018 05:17:45 +0000 Bizop Team

How to Prevent Data Breaches Without Blowing Your Budget

Small businesses and startups face plenty of challenges. You might be strapped for resources, short on staffing, or still working toward being profitable. Add the risk of data breaches and things get even more complicated.

Many small business owners think they're not at risk of a cyber attack. However, statistics prove otherwise: As many as half of all data breaches occur at small businesses. That’s because hackers know their security measures tend to be lax.

Warding off data breaches does involve spending some of your hard-earned profits. For example, there are some must-have protections you will need to implement, including anti-virus software and firewalls. However, there are a number of inexpensive measures you can also take. For example, you can beef up your password policies. And you can purchase software for monitoring employees. These measures will greatly increase your defenses.

Let’s take a closer look at some further strategies here.


Restrict User Access

Abusiness’s own employees cause many data breaches, either accidentally or maliciously. Therefore, limit access to sensitive information, data and systems only to those staff members who absolutely need it. Employees who don't have confidential information in the first place can't lose it or steal it. Also, prevent employees from downloading new software without prior permission.


Require Strong Credentials

You're likely well aware that strong passwords are crucial for security. However, do you enforce this as a policy? Your system should require employees to change their passwords with some regularity, at least once per quarter. Additionally, it should require complex passwords of at least 14 digits. What’s more, it should call for both uppercase and lowercase letters, numbers and symbols.


Monitor Your Employees

Employee tracking software is an affordable and easily managed way of reducing risk. Software for monitoring employees allows you to create rules for how anyone can use data and information. For example, you can restrict anyone from emailing or printing highly sensitive data. The software also alerts you when anyone violates the rules you establish. Therefore, you can quickly address risky behavior.




Regulate Mobile Devices

Smartphones, tablets and laptops pose a major risk. This is especially true when employees use them to access sensitive business information and the devices aren’t secure. A single lost or stolen device can cripple your business if it doesn’t have the proper protections.

Create a policy that outlines whether employees can use personal devices for work purposes. Further, if you decide to allow it, provide details about how devices must be made secure. For example, will you require a password for access or a thumbprint?

Additionally, if your company provides mobile devices, make sure to protect each one with a password. Set them up to automatically install security updates. Ensure that they can be remotely wiped if they happen to be lost or stolen.

Finally, install your software for monitoring employees on all mobile devices, too.



Create Data Storage Rules

Just as you want to restrict how certain data is shared, it's important to set rules for how data can be stored. Restrict the use of removable devices such as USB drives, particularly for sensitive information. These tiny devices are easily lost. This increases the risk that confidential information will fall into the wrong hands.


Educate Your Employees

Employees who have a good understanding of cybersecurity risks and prevention best practices are far less likely to put your data in jeopardy. Create a culture of awareness where everyone talks about, learns about and enforces cybersecurity. Furthermore, make sure that employees feel comfortable reporting violations or risks.

Being honest with your employees is key to creating this type of culture. If you're blocking access to certain websites or apps, explain why they pose a risk. Further, let your staff know what you're doing if you're implementing software for monitoring employees. If you're respectful of your staff, they'll likely return the favor.

The post How to Prevent Data Breaches Without Blowing Your Budget appeared first on Business Opportunities.

Wed, 21 Mar 2018 04:23:17 +0000 Bizop Team

Don’t Let These Insurance Myths Keep You from Protecting Your Family

As the owner of a small business, many responsibilities fall heavily on your shoulders. Among them is the duty you have to protect your family. Don’t let the insurance myths we discuss below keep you from purchasing adequate coverage for you and your family.

Insurance is a contract between the policy owner and the insurer. Depending upon the specific contract, the insurer agrees to pay a certain amount to the family of the insured in the event of the individual's death or some other event.

Here, we debunk 8 common insurance myths that might be keeping you from adequately protecting your family.




1. Insurance Will Pay Benefits Only After My Death

The main objective of a life insurance policy is to provide financial protection to your family in the event of your death. That much is true. However, this is not its only function. Life insurance can also help you to prepare for a more comfortable retirement.


2. Insurance Is Only for Tax Savings

While tax savings are an added advantage of having insurance, this is not its only objective. Protecting your family is its chief purpose.

3. The Group Insurance I Already Have Is Enough

If you’re lucky enough to be able to take advantage of a group insurance policy, hold onto it as long as you can. However, if your circumstances should change, you could lose your group insurance coverage. Therefore, it’s best to take out insurance apart from the group insurance policy you already have.

4. I Am Single and I Do Not Need Any Coverage

Even if you’re single, you need insurance to take care of your own health and retirement needs. Even if you don’t have a family to look after, you surely have other liabilities. For example, you likely have loans, credit card bills, and the like. Your insurance policy will offer coverage for these liabilities.

5. Life Insurance Is Expensive

It’s true that a life insurance policy does cost something. However, if you look into it, you’ll find that it is not all that expensive. What’s more, you can choose a level of coverage that you can afford.

This means that you can indeed provide for the financial security of your family with a low-cost premium. If you consider the sum assured and compare it with the annual premium, you will see that it is not expensive.

Consider your current financial position, your lifestyle and your needs. Then determine the sum assured amount for the coverage you desire. Your premium amount will be based upon that figure.

6. Individuals with Health Problems Cannot Get Life Insurance

This is one of those insurance myths that is unquestionably false. Companies are willing to sell life insurance policies to people with various medical problems. What’s more, some companies also specialize in high-risk coverage. All the same, you must be absolutely truthful about your health issues when you apply. When you do, you will find that there are companies who will provide you with coverage, even if you have a longstanding health condition.

7. Buying Term Insurance Is Complex

You can buy your insurance plan either online or at an office. However you choose to approach it, the entire procedure will not take more than a single day. You’ll be able to view details about your policy online within a very short time. Even better, when it’s time to renew your policy, you can do so online with ease.

So don’t let this insurance myth keep you from buying the coverage you need,including anonline term plan. This is a plan that will provide financial coverage for a specific period. Upon the death of the insured, the insurer will pay the sum assured amount to the nominee.


8. Claim Settlement Is Complicated

This is another of those insurance myths that you can set aside as false. You can process a claim process either online or offline. The process is similar in both cases. As a matter of fact, there are multiple touch points through which you can communicate with your insurer about your claim. You won’t need to rely on an intermediary because it is a transparent and hassle-free process.


Don’t Let Another Day Go By

So don’t let any of the insurance myths we’ve discussed here keep you from buying the insurance policies you need. Protect your family and provide yourself with the peace of mind you deserve.

The post Don’t Let These Insurance Myths Keep You from Protecting Your Family appeared first on Business Opportunities.

Plugin Settings

Plugin settings are stored as preferences variables. To reference a plugin setting write %<plugin>_<setting>%, for example, %HEADLINESPLUGIN_SHORTDESCRIPTION%. Note: Don't modify the settings here; copy and customize the settings in Main.TWikiPreferences. For example, to customize the USERAGENTNAME setting, create a HEADLINESPLUGIN_USERAGENTNAME setting in Main.TWikiPreferences.

  • 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

  • Refresh rate in minutes for cached feeds. Disable caching: 0, default: 60
    • Set REFRESH = 60

  • Maximum number of items shown. Default: 100
    • Set LIMIT = 100

  • Use LWP::UserAgent, or fallback to TWiki's internal getUrl() method. Default: yes

  • Timeout fetching a feed using the LWP::UserAgent. Default: 20

  • Name of user agent. Default: TWikiHeadlinesPlugin/2.21
      * Set USERAGENTNAME = TWikiHeadlinesPlugin/2.21

  • Default header: (variables are explained in the syntax rules)
      * Set 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 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

  • Download the ZIP file
  • Unzip it in your twiki installation directory. Content:
    File: Description:
    data/TWiki/HeadlinesPlugin.txt plugin topic
    pub/TWiki/HeadlinesPlugin/style.css default css
    lib/TWiki/HeadlinesPlugin.pm plugin perl module
    lib/TWiki/HeadlinesPlugin/Core.pm plugin core
    Check if above examples show a news feed instead of variable.
  • Optionally, run HeadlinesPlugin_installer.pl to automatically check and install other TWiki modules that this module depends on. You can also do this step manually.
  • Alternatively, manually 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 Info

Plugin Author: TWiki:Main.PeterThoeny, TWiki:Main.MichaelDaum
Copyright: © 2002-2009, Peter Thoeny, TWIKI.NET; 2005-2007, Michael Daum http://wikiring.de
License: GPL (GNU General Public License)
Plugin Version: v2.21 - 12 Feb 2009
Change History:  
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: TWiki:Plugins/HeadlinesPlugin
Feedback: TWiki:Plugins/HeadlinesPluginDev
Appraisal: TWiki:Plugins/HeadlinesPluginAppraisal

-- TWiki:Main.PeterThoeny - 12 Jan 2009
-- TWiki:Main.MichaelDaum - 13 Sep 2007

Topic revision: r1 - 13 Feb 2009 - 03:55:45 - TWikiContributor
This site is powered by the TWiki collaboration platformCopyright & by the contributing authors. All material on this collaboration platform is the property of the contributing authors.
Ideas, requests, problems regarding TWiki? Send feedback
Note: Please contribute updates to this topic on TWiki.org at TWiki:TWiki.HeadlinesPlugin