Ben Langhinrichs

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Short agents



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We need more than baby steps


January, 2006
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Genii Weblog


Civility in critiquing the ideas of others is no vice. Rudeness in defending your own ideas is no virtue.


Thu 5 Jan 2006, 11:55 PM
One of the things that bugs me about RSS feeds is that they are a pull technology (instead of a push), but don't use of the classic advantages of pull technology, which is the ability to be selective.  It seems like it would be incredibly easy to add a parameter or two to the request to filter the results.  For example, the RSS feed for this weblog is:

http://www.geniisoft.com/showcase.nsf/BlogStories.xml

but since this is a Domino RSS feed, why not allow you to select a bit more, such as:

http://www.geniisoft.com/showcase.nsf/BlogStories.xml&OpenAgent&Comments=Yes

and comments would be included, or

http://www.geniisoft.com/showcase.nsf/BlogStories.xml&OpenAgent&Category=Lotusphere

and only subjects in the Lotusphere category would be returned.  Likewise, you could use:

http://www.geniisoft.com/showcase.nsf/BlogStories.xml&OpenAgent&Cutoff=2006-01-05

and only topics after the cutoff date would be returned.  But why bother, you may ask?  Well, here is what led me to this.  Christopher Linfoot made a request about the new RSS feeds that have been added to the Lotus LDD forums, which is that comments be separated into a separate feed, as the volume is too extreme the way it is now.  But I hate comments in a separate feed.  So it occurred to me, why not only give main topics by default, but add a hotspot on each main topic that says "Pull in thread", and then the default:

http://www-10.lotus.com/ldd/nd6forum.nsf/forumfeed.rss

could be replaced by something like:

http://www-10.lotus.com/ldd/nd6forum.nsf/forumfeed.rss?OpenAgent&ParentUNID=cc8952b68d4ea683852570ed0040edc2

which would pull in that whole thread.  The RSS readers could handle the variability now in most cases, as they don't get rid of old content just because it is not in the feed, and they don't duplicate posts, so the thread would simply be populated.  This seems to me like the best of both worlds.  Have I missed something, or could we propose this?

Copyright © 2006 Genii Software Ltd.

Thu 5 Jan 2006, 03:07 PM
Version 2 of the Lotusphere 2006 Sessions db is out, and I think you'll be quite impressed.  Lots of new information on non-session sessions such as labs, ISV Theater, Product Showcase, etc., plus a whole lot more people (let me know if you want to be added), and a couple of very cool graphical calendars that let you see all the events for a particular day at one time, including labs, showcase, sessions, BOFs and more.

Thanks also go out to all the members of Penumbra who have helped with the database.

Copyright © 2006 Genii Software Ltd.