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Image: Mashable, Nina Frazier Hansen

The RSS feed — or as we now know it, “the feed” — organizes the world into a series of neat, clickable, constantly updating bits of information. But it’s a relatively new concept — just 10 short years ago, there was no way to know what a public figure such as Justin Bieber was thinking in real time.

The feed now dominates online content consumption, from the news we read on our mobile devices to the social networks we check constantly throughout the day, as well as the ads that integrate onto those platforms.

2013 was undoubtedly the feed’s year: Video-sharing app Vine surpassed 40 million registered users, while Twitter topped 200 million. And in-feed advertising became a standard on Facebook, Instagram and even Pinterest.

This infographic from Sharethrough chronicles the history of feed formats, from its humble search engine origins to the dominance of feed-based news readers and networks. Here’s to a feed-tastic 2014.

History of the Feed

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