The WordPress community like any OpenSource project has got a highly creative and devout developer base. They never fail to please you with every major release of WP. So the customizable dashboard was also no surprise. But the fact that we can use some applets on the dashboard as makeshift feed reader is what really impressed me. If you have a self hosted WP blog, you should probably have noticed this, or may be you don’t. So here is how you can view feeds on your WP dashboard.
You can use two of WordPress applets as feed reader which will show you the title with the first few sentences from a feed. The third one is much limited. This is made from the “Incoming Links” applet and so it shows only the first few words of the posts and the link. The two applets that can be used to view latest feeds as excerpts are titled “Other WordPress News” and “WordPress Development Blog”. When you move your mouse over the Title Bar of these applets you can see a configure link.
Click on that ad you will be taken to a page where you can set options for that particular applet. The config options include number of posts to be shown from that feed, Address of the feed, Title of the feed and some minor tweaks. I have added this blogs feed to the applet to show you how its is done. Once you have set these options you ca save them and configure the other applet. Coming to the third applet which is a little less mighty, things ecome somewhat different. We cannot edit the title of this applet directly from the dashboard (although we can do it by editing WP core file). You can just edit the address of the feed and the number of posts to be shown.
If you would like to keep the original applet feeds, make sure you save the feed addresses before changing them. You can use these applets to subscribe to two blogs which you can never miss out on. Although this can’t be substituted for a regular feed reader this would be fun tweaking.