Technical Blog

Commentosphere Update

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After a bit of a rocky start Commentosphere seems to be operating normally. After talking a fair bit about the project and its scope with Johan of Ecmanaut, I have reduced the amount of data that needs to be input/stored for each comment and updated the labels/filters on some fields. As a result of this there is a new bookmarklet, so you may wish to switch to that. There are also now JSON feeds, with two callback options and a read-only XML API format for query pages.

Johan’s idea of calling the service ‘Webadict’ has been growing on me, but the one problem there is that it would probably require changing the URL of the service, which is just about impossible on Ning if you want to keep all your data as is.

The importer has been taken offline, as there were performance issue with the Ning backend that caused odd (and mostly useless) results. The Aggregator still has the same sorting problems, tag intersections are not yet supported, and the filter that finds children of the selected comment only works if the child comments have but one parent. These are the only four currently known glitches in the system, and it seems to be working admirably besides these.

I will be out of contact for just over a week, starting this Friday.


5 Responses

Johan Sundström

If you want to adopt the other name, now is the time; the system holds a grand total of fourteen entries, of which I’d say you could easily enough import them all manually, if necessary. Once the importer gets done and working, it could even be done in automated fashion.

Can’t you flag a Ning application’s data as copyable, for others wanting to clone the application? I seem to recall that it was an option open to the application developer whether this should be possible or not, and if so, this would not even stand in the way of a name change.

But the first requirement for any change is always wanting to. 🙂 I have deleted my clone under that name now, so the option is at least open.


I realise that since most of the data in the system is mine, migration would not be a problem. I’m not entirely sure if about the new name, but it’s better than what I’ve got…

As to copyable data, what you can actually do is access the public data from any application by any other application. You can’t copy the data properly though, because when you read the data out of one app and post it into the other, the contributor names on all data will change to the currently logged in user (ie me).

I’m going to think more on this and make a decision today or tomorrow…


The logic behind the Webadict name (correct me if I’m wrong here, Johan) is that this is really a service who’s scope could branch beyond comments to track conversations across the web (posts to obscure forum threads as well as comments on blog posts). That makes the service analogous to a dictaphone (talk and it tracks you) merging these brought dictaweb or webadict, webadict has the added bonus of sounding like ‘addict’, but it isn’t 😉

Other names I’ve thought of :

– Web Conversations (would probably end up shortened to some cheesy thing like webconvoz)
– TalkTracker / TalkTrackr
– TrackTalk

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