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Spoon feeding a tasty news diet directly to you

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Although you can spend a lot of time looking for things on the web, it is a lot less effort to get yards of information sent to you on a regular basis via e-mail. You subscribe - invariably for free - and there in your e-mail inbox each morning you find the news. It is usually in the form of headlines and a short precis plus a URL for each story in underlined blue on which you click should you want further and better particulars.

I get a lot of them because it is my trade and because I feel a lot better when there are 17 e-mails waiting every morning rather than one or two.

I won't suggest that you get such illustrated news feeds as Ananova www.ananova.com, or ITN www.itn.co.uk because they tell you what you saw on the TV the night before.

One of the problems news providers (which are mostly print news) have is how to give out the latest news online and not discourage people from buying the printed version. However, many publictions are quite relaxed about putting out news as it occurs.

Dare I begin with our own AJ Plus news feed at www.ajplus.com? Of course I do. Its daily e-mail includes a couple of the main stories from architecture, construction, business, projects, e-commerce and civil engineering. Don't be put off by the spread of topics: that's exactly what is needed in our parochial industry.

One weekly news feed I really like is About Architecture www.architecture.about.com, an unintentionally wacky site. Its main headlines last week included 'Celebrate Skyscrapers', 'Gothic or Modern?', 'What is Good Design?' and 'Sensuality and Gender'.

Don't bother about the latter, it is a request for opinion and information for a student thesis. One weekly regular is the Mystery Houses section. Here you are shown a house and asked 'What style is this house, really?' Good for those long afternoons when the network has gone down and you have left your pencil at home.

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