Advogato RFE: Advogato as a social platform

Posted 18 Mar 2002 at 11:16 UTC by DV Share This

It's a quick request: so far advogato is used a lot to expose what each of us is doing, but doesn't really allow easilly exchange of ideas in the form of a discussion except for articles but which happen only as a global forum.

I would like to suggest a couple of extensions which would improve the social role of Advogato as an asynchronous archived media exchange.

I have seen occasionally people addressing messages from their diaries to me , and replied in my own diary. Unfortunately it's impossible to catch when someone referred to you (unless reading all diaries which I don't think is really productive).

But advogato has the person tag, it carries a social weight, and I don't think we use it fully. One simple extension would be on the personal page of a logged person to get a list of the last recent diaries pointing to oneself. Similary I would be very interested to have informations when people reference a project (using the proj tag) that I'm involved in. Those informations could also be refected in the project pages.

Another point I'm wondering about is the lifetime of advogato data, it sounds to me that the archives of advogato are very important, maybe not that much to the people involved ATM, but maybe in 10 or 20 years when social researchers will be looking back at our movement, the informations contained in advogato could be as important as the old Usenix achives of comp.os.minix and comp.os.linux, do we keep permanent backup. Can we make sure they get archived "officially" ? (in France one can give such public records for archiving to governemental offices who promise to keep them "forever" as long as the owner accept to grant access to their content under some reasonable conditions, similar services probably exists in most countries.)

Yes. Why not., posted 18 Mar 2002 at 11:54 UTC by skypher » (Observer)

I agree that it would be nice to have a better way of communicating among users on Advogato.
Other solutions, other than the one you mentioned, might include:

  • forums
  • internal messaging system
  • personal guestbooks

Don't know if these really "fit" advogato, just some suggestions/ideas from the top of my head.

Regarding keeping the archives "forever"; Saving the archives would be both interesting and useful, but a lot of fun as well! :)

- Joel

cross-reference entries without threading, posted 18 Mar 2002 at 20:08 UTC by sej » (Master)

It would be nice to have something like an "<entry>" tag that cross-references another person's diary entry, and adds a backwards link from that diary entry to the current one as well. This would facilitate discourse without supporting the kind of single-threaded dialogue that tend to degenerate over time.

Re: cross-reference entries without threading, posted 18 Mar 2002 at 21:10 UTC by chalst » (Master)

sej: why do we need the special tag? Surely it is just a change to virgule to parse anchor tags in diary entries and either append them to the numbered diary entry (if the tag is that specific) of the referred to person, or to the currently most recent diary entry (otherwise).

Re: cross-reference without threading, posted 18 Mar 2002 at 21:49 UTC by sej » (Master)

A new tag would inform the diarist that a link to their entry will appear elsewhere at advogato. And it still might be useful to make a one-way link to another diary entry in your own entry, when your comment is for your readers, not the other guy's.

RE: Advogato as a social platform, posted 18 Mar 2002 at 21:59 UTC by chalst » (Master)

sej: I think you misunderstand me. I mean we change advogato so that normal anchors have exactly the behaviour of entry tags, either as you propose, or with the bit of extra `intelligence' I suggest. No new things for existing users to absorb, and we can retroactively apply the change to past advogato diary entries. I've been meaning to suggest this change for a while.

Re: cross-reference without threading, posted 18 Mar 2002 at 22:02 UTC by chalst » (Master)

sej: Ah, I am guilty of misreading your post. I think the `retrofitting' advantage applies. We can add an `xref/noxref' attribute to anchors with a per user toggle (default xref/noxref) to get the flexibility you desire.

Couple of things:, posted 18 Mar 2002 at 22:28 UTC by DV » (Master)

Yes I think some kind of cross reference would be useful. Something a simple as an ID for each diary entry maybe sufficient would be sufficient. At the markup level that could be <person diary="1234">DV<person>

but still my main point would be about starting those exchange, so far I probably read diaries of 1/10th of the people posting, and some of those I skip may have something to say I should look at, how do you call a person number on advogato ? there is no way to dial ! Still there is a need you can see people who know themselves already exchanging ideas through the mean of diaries.

I don't think forums are really what is needed, we have them already in the form of the articles. Discussion is more pivate, and the form of exchange using diaries is closer to this.

I think these are doable, posted 19 Mar 2002 at 02:18 UTC by raph » (Master)

Thanks for the suggestions, DV.

I think a "person" backlink feature for diaries is reasonably doable. As you might imagine, I have a pretty big list of things I'd like to do with Advogato, and a relatively small amount of time set aside for it. Even so, being persistent could result in a fairly large payoff over the long haul.

As far as backups, I keep a fairly complete set of CD archives. One tricky issue is the passwords embedded in the acct/*/profile.xml files. Either the recipient of the backups has to be trustworthy to not abuse these passwords, or somebody has to do a little script to clean these from the tarballs, so that what remains can be made public without any security problems. I'll gladly accept such a script!

I have a fix coded up for the recent performance problems (a stupid locking problem when the tmetric is being calculated), but haven't applied it yet to the live system. Soon!

Effects of tracking references to 'proj' links, posted 19 Mar 2002 at 04:10 UTC by cpw » (Apprentice)

Tracking references to <proj> links would effectively give each project an unmoderated discussion group - you'd post by putting a link to the project in the diary entry, and the project summary would contain a list of recent diary articles referencing it.

I like this approach. It's reminiscent of Gelernter's 'lifestream' concept, where a person's information is arranged automatically in a chronological stream. This means the file name doesn't have to take metadata center stage, and allows other views of data to shine.

Re: I think these are doable, posted 19 Mar 2002 at 08:04 UTC by DV » (Master)

raph wrote:

> As far as backups, I keep a fairly complete set of CD archives.

Excellent :-). Can you just make sure there is a copy held by a separate entity, preferably not an individual. Possibly add this to your PhD package once you complete it, an University would be a good recipient too, just look at what can happen when people move...

Concerning the password, yes they should be stripped from the archives, they may have personal relationship, or be reused somewhere else, they should not be published. If archives are kept as XML it should be relatively easy to cleanup. I should install mod_virgule and have a look :-)

All, posted 19 Mar 2002 at 09:27 UTC by Malx » (Journeyer)

You could point to specific diary already. Just click on it's arrow, "copy link location" and "paste" it to reply:
<a href="/person/Malx/diary.html?start=22">Malx</a>

I thinks any automation of this process could be add to TODO of MyAdvogato script :)

If you ever will add checking for person and proj tags this could lead to misuse. For example some observer could be registered just to say [proj]SomeThing[/proj] is suxx and this will be add to project page :) without ability to remove it.

I have heard someone write a script, which reloads recentlog every some hours and checkes for any word (It could be you nick or project name). And notify you (via mail?!) if there is it. It could be written in 10 minutes and set to crontab. But.... it reloads "recentlog" everytime ;(

Also - do not forget about

coordination, posted 21 Mar 2002 at 16:49 UTC by cmiller » (Master)

So, is anyone actually implementing any of these ideas? I'm sure a few of us would consider it, but we'd hate to duplicate effort.

I like the [person]-tag backlink, and the [person#id=N] link to journal entry, but I dislike the idea of a similar functionality for the [project] tag.

jcv complained well about not having a more owner-friendly interface on one's own person-page. An "add new diary" link would be perfect above the most recent entry.

444 - is a good number for such article :), posted 23 Mar 2002 at 19:05 UTC by Malx » (Journeyer)*/
Click on the link to get archive of advogato on date you like :)

I do not know If Nov29 1999 is day of birth... No. But it is very close to it :)

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