We are using SharePoint online, and I wanted to know what is the difference between discussion board and newsfeed? and can we activate notifications for both?
At its core the newsfeed allows you to post and reply to users in a format that encourages discussion and participation. The newsfeed allows you to see events, actions and posts from people, sites and documents that you are following.
You can check the colleague’s status and post up-to-date. SharePoint newsfeed is where you can see what your co-workers are doing throughout your work day and share ideas and observations as they occur to you. Depending on your newsfeed settings, the feed may also send emails to you to notify the events, such as when someone mentions you in a post, and it may show your activities, such as when you’ve started following someone. You control email notifications and your activities you want to share with others
Newsfeeds display the most recent microblogs and activities (interactions with specific entities within SharePoint) to users; they are what pulls everything together. Newsfeeds are generically known as activity streams. SharePoint 2013's activity streams show you all of the recent activities performed on the portal, as well as allowing you to interact with microblogs you see in your activity
Discussion Board is used for communication among team members. The discussion board shows the most recent discussion first on top, as well as the number of replies for each discussion. User can quickly see which discussions have the most recent activity and which ones are the most popular discussion. Members can also customize their own views of the discussion board.
Key Features of a Discussion Board