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Consider one feed like this: http://feeds.feedburner.com/codinghorror

It has the entire content inside the description tag of the feed, so you don't need to access the website to read the post.

Now I have the problem of creating an interface for a feed like this on a desktop client. What's the best way to render the text in a pleasant way to the user? My first thought was to parse the entire HTML as if I was a web browser, but that looks really hard to do in a satisfying way. Are there any better (faster) alternatives?

Rephrasing: how a desktop rss client such as feeddamon parses the input to display it nicely? Does it have a web browser inside it?

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up vote 1 down vote accepted

What you are looking for is a web-browser engine: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Web_browser_engine

That is what renders the HTML "as if it was a web-browser". For example, Firefox uses Gecko, and Google and iOS use WebKit. According to the FeedDemon google group, FeedDemon uses the engine of the Internet Explorer that is installed on your Windows system.

If you want to create a desktop client that renders a feed into HTML, you first parse out the HTML from the XML. Then, you can use a web-browser engine that matches your programming language (here is a list of comparisons from Wikipedia).

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Yeah, I believe this will help me. Now I just have to choose one and find the API. Thanks! –  Thiago Moraes Jun 17 '12 at 0:10
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