Jon’s Radio Comments

October 10, 2006

WordPress for loosely-coupled comments, part 2

Filed under: Uncategorized — jonsradiocomments @ 3:50 pm

The original item is here.

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9 Comments »

  1. Its interesting that you also observe the level of cross blog interactivity going down. There was a day when we worried about how to correlate RSS items using included guids; now it seems comment pages such as this seem to have most of the discussion.

    What are the reasons for this? Comments seem to hit the sweet spot of low activation threshhold, whereas blogs these days seem more productized, in the sense that people seem to be more thoughtful and ‘authory’ about their posts. People used blogs as linkblogs before delicious came around; perhaps the act of linkblogging made the activation threshold seem lesser then. There were fewer blogs then that one wanted to read too; so perhaps we all had more time.

    All of this seems to indicate to me that we havent still developed good tools to deal with reading lists; to filter stuff from them; to reduce the info-overload. And further we havent developed the tools that make cross blog interaction low-activation. Perhaps the notion of the blog, rather than a public feed is the main culprit here. In the old days, Radio alowed non-blog category feeds, but it wasnt clear how many of these were subscribed to.

    Maybe these need to be revived as a collected notion of a persons output. Otherwise things go mostly one way into delicious and the blogs, and the coversation aspect is lost. This is not to say that one cant generate feeds from apps such as delicious; but rather that our notion of aggregation and feedreaders is primitive, and that we have got used to this sorry state of affairs. Otherwise how to explain the large popularity of bloglines for example, which allows one to do precisely nothing further to the collected clips..

    Comment by Rahul Dave — October 10, 2006 @ 8:25 pm | Reply

  2. You’ve made an odd choice in treating your comments as second class citizens. By using Javascript, the comments (like badges), will not be indexed by search engines and findable right on your site.

    That seems kind of strange. Why not pull the data in on the server side so that entities who inhabit the non-Javascript lands can benefit too?

    Comment by Jeremy Zawodny — October 10, 2006 @ 11:13 pm | Reply

  3. > By using Javascript, the comments (like badges), will not be
    > indexed by search engines

    At least not directly. I’ll be curious to see how thoroughly the parallel comment blog will be indexed.

    > Why not pull the data in on the server side?

    I might decide to at some point. For now, I was curious to see what would happen if I were to Do The Simplest Thing That Could Possibly Work.

    Comment by Jon Udell — October 11, 2006 @ 12:25 am | Reply

  4. > treating your comments as second class citizens

    Come to think of it, in one sense mine are first-class and yours second-class. I thought about hiding the comment block until revealed with a click, as on your blog, but then for some reason decided to display it directly. Might decide to change that too, not sure. What was your rationale?

    Comment by Jon Udell — October 11, 2006 @ 12:52 am | Reply

  5. The comments on every one of my posts are right there for anyone to see–no clicking required. I’m not sure what the behavior you’re referring to is.

    Are you using some kind of wacky browser extension that might be hiding bits of the DOM or something? This sounds very odd.

    Comment by Jeremy Zawodny — October 11, 2006 @ 1:36 am | Reply

  6. > no clicking required

    Oh, I was looking here:

    http://jeremy.zawodny.com/blog/

    instead of, say, here:

    http://jeremy.zawodny.com/blog/archives/007673.html

    Never mind…

    Comment by Jon Udell — October 11, 2006 @ 1:56 am | Reply

  7. Ahh, okay.

    That page, in some ways, isn’t that different than my RSS feed. Well, except that it’s far less popular. In fact, my “main index” page really doesn’t get many readers at all.

    Comment by Jeremy Zawodny — October 11, 2006 @ 2:42 am | Reply

  8. Gosh, my so-called “comments system” comprises 813 lines of Ruby code and took me probably two days to write if you glob all the little bits and pieces of time together. So I’m not sure I buy into “his energetic approach”. There’s a point in that: the tools are getting better, and with a modern language like Ruby and its seductive HTML-construction tools, you can do a whole lot of work with not very much code. Having said that, I think that your approach is absolutely the way to go for the 99.99999% of the population that doesn’t feel professionally required to have hands-on experience at the coal-face; I need to do this to help me avoid being stupid in the advice that I get paid to deliver.

    On your other point; I’ve never supported either trackback or pingback, and have always used a straightforward pair of Technorati vanity feeds (by link, by name) to keep track of what people are saying about what I write. I don’t have any measurements, but it doesn’t feel to me like the conversational flow has abated. Maybe I’m wrong, or maybe there’s something different in our audiences. Somebody should be doing some, you know, actual research with actual measurements.

    Comment by Tim Bray — October 11, 2006 @ 4:49 am | Reply

  9. > hands-on experience at the coal-face; I need to do this
    Yep. And you’re right, with better languages and frameworks more is possible. The corollary is that more is also possible when stitching together components made from those languages and frameworks — and, of course, using the languages and frameworks to do the stitching.
    > Somebody should be doing some, you know, actual research
    Somebody with a company that does event stream processing asked me recently what would be a good way to demo that technology. I suggested that since the blogosphere is event-driven — at the level of its ping network — it would be cool to hook into that and do some useful analysis and visualization.

    Comment by Jon Udell — October 11, 2006 @ 12:54 pm | Reply


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