Atom is an XML-based standard for distributing content to feed readers and news aggregators. The Atom Syndication Format is what this is called. WordPress may produce an Atom feed for material and include it in the header template so that feed readers and news aggregators can find it automatically.
These feed readers scan for updates on your site on a regular basis and then notify their users of any new content. RSS performs the same thing, however Atom was created to address some of RSS’s problems. These web feeds can be found on a variety of large and small websites. Users are frequently given the option of using the RSS or Atom formats.
Feed readers are normally separate programs that operate on the client’s computer, however browsers are increasingly integrating feed readers within their interfaces. The benefit is that the feed reader does not need to be installed, and the feeds are accessible from any computer with an internet connection. These feed readers can sometimes merge multiple web feeds on a single topic.
This word can also refer to the Atom Publishing Protocol (also known as AtomPub), which is a related web standard. This protocol enables you to remotely publish, edit, and delete posts and media files. AtomPub is not activated by default in WordPress 3.5, although the Atom Publishing Protocol Plugin can be utilized.