I added a new feature to simplify the reviewing of feeds after a query from the Syndic8 Feed List. You can now use the new “Link Mode” option in the feed list query box to specify that you want the feed info windows to open up in “approve” mode.
For example, you could use the feed list to query for all “topix” feeds in Awaiting Approval state, and specify that the windows should be opened up in Approve mode.
This will reduce the need to manually edit the feed info URLs.
Use of a browser with support for tabbed browsing will make your life easier. Using Firefox, I can simply control-click on each link in the feed list to open it in a new window.
It would be cool if the HTML “A” tag supported a “_newtab” target.
As a consequence of a disk space shortage, the Syndic8 poller has been running on an irregular basis lately.
Over the weekend I restructured the polling process to make better use of disk space. I also removed the end-of-poll update which was the root cause behind the “unable to connect” messages that were an all-too-frequent occurence of late.
Finally, we will be getting a new 250MB drive (bringing the total storage up to 397MB) later today.
There will be a brief outage today when the machine is upgraded.
After that, things will be running a lot more smoothly.
One consequence of the change to the polling process is that the “headlines per day” are only displayed for the last few days. No data has been lost; but there was no efficient way to pull this info from both the old and new database tables.
Next on my plate:
- Doing more interesting things with metadata
- Improving the review process
I have optimized the Syndic8 Category Browser — it is not longer dog-slow (sorry, all fast dogs). I did some database tuning, and I used SmartCache to reduce the need to hit the database.
I also added OPML and OCS feeds to the category browser. You can get a list of all feeds in the category, or in the category and all child categories. For example, you can go to Science and pull down a list of the feeds in the Science category and the 9 child categories all at once.
The same child access functionality has also been added to the GetFeedsInCategory function, for those accessing Syndic8 via the Web Services Interface.
I recently fixed a bug which made it impossible to submit a gzipped feed to Syndic8.
Right now there are over 7,500 compressed feeds in the Syndic8 database. On average, the compressed version of a feed is just 30.42% of the original size. Here’s a graph:
If you are giving out feeds, consider installing and enabling mod_gzip. If your application consumes feeds, be sure to accept gzipped content.
I have a job opening for a Web Services Evangelist in Europe. The idea candidate would be based in Germany, the UK, or France, would have an impressive technical background, and would have some level of name recognition within the technical community. There is travel involved, and you’d have to be really good at presenting, networking, and making things happen. You need to speak English, and French or German.
Read the complete job description for more information.
Resumes and CV’s can be submitted to the email address on the job description page.
While surfing around using Amazon’s new A9 site, I found this great quote from Burt Rutan:
The general rule here is that you don’t get the privilege of designing something unless you have the capability of building it with your own hands. And that’s a rule that I think is extremely important.
This should also apply to software.
We rolled out the new release of the Amazon Web Services today. This release includes the E-Commerce Service and a beta of the Alexa Web Information Service.
CNet already has the story.
For the past 3 months I have been working with developers to make sure that we have some great applications ready to go as part of the release. I will be discussing them here over the upcoming days and weeks.
For the record, note that this is my personal blog, and not any kind of “official voice of Amazon”. I wouldn’t want to end up like my friend Joyce.
After an uneventful Alaska Air flight from Reno to Seattle (and a nice Mount St. Helens flyby), we landed early only to learn that the jetway was broken and could not be brought out to the plane. With this message we embarked on a tedious and somewhat scary journey to nowhere.
At various times we were told that the jetway was broken, that we would be using stairs from the front, stairs from the back, that management was on their way to move the jetway (what did the plan to do, order it to move?), that a breaker in the jetway would be reset, and so forth. The plane was pushed back twice, 10 or 12 feet each time.
People were beginning to freak out as they realized that we were basically trapped inside and that they couldn’t get us out even though the plane was intact and we were at the gate. They could have moved us to another gate 5 minutes into the affair. How hard would it be to figure this out? I am sure that the average gorilla could have figured this out without too much difficulty.
Don’t they have a contingency plan for something as simple as this? What would these buffoons do if there was a real emergency?
I have to question the competency of all involved in this debacle; I will be sending a detailed rant to the Seattle Port Authority in the near future. As far as I can tell, Alaska Air is blameless here.
Overall, management of all types at Sea-Tac is in disarray. Incompetence at the local TSA office means that we have the nation’s longest average waiting times for the security screening. With this event, I see that these people are actively preventing us from getting on to or getting off planes! I guess they think that the airport is there to sell us overpriced food and drink, not to help us to actually go somewhere.
I spent most of the weekend at Chris Pirillo‘s Gnomedex conference; I met a lot of great people, put some faces behind the names, and had a really good time. I also brought back a lot of SWAG. Chris was nice enough to put together some great SWAG-bags for the panelists — a very thoughtful touch.
Doug Kaye of IT Conversations recorded and will post the entire conference here.
I spoke on a panel centered around the future of online advertising. Dave Taylor posted a complete set of reference links (nice domain name, Dave).
Net-net from the conference — RSS is about to hit the big-time, in a really big way. Essentially every session revolved around RSS, syndication, and feeds. I think the real power here is the separation, de-aggregation (e.g. items instead of sites), and exposure of plain, unadulterated content. People are just now starting to grasp the power of taking this raw info and using it as they please, rather than in the way that it was intended to be used. As William Gibson said, “the street finds its own use for things.”
My list of cool URLs to visit is now pretty long. I’ll scavenge these from my notes and post the most interesting stuff as soon as I have some time.