Make your own Tabbed River

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dodyg

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Sep 4, 2012, 9:40:11 AM9/4/12
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Hi folks,

Greeting from Cairo. 

Now you can add create your own Tabbed River at http://hobieu.apphb.com/. Simply follow the Create New Wall link. It's a one step process (without need for registration)

Now you can do the following:
  • Add or remove river sources (screenshot http://i.imgur.com/sC0jE.png)
  • Edit every visual/interactive aspect of your tabbed river (screenshot: http://i.imgur.com/XlZVE.png)
  • OPML subscription list for the rivers is accessible from your public Tabbed River which you can consume using Dave's World Outline (I assume, I haven't tested it yet)
This for example is my own Tabbed River http://hobieu.apphb.com/r/dodyg

If you are a developer, the source code for this system is located at https://github.com/dodyg/hobi-hobi (AGPL)

Disclaimer: Right now I am hosting the system on a free account at  https://appharbor.com/  with 200MB RavenDB space. So the system will be up as long as I am on their good grace.

Please try it out and let me know.

Danke Mucho,

Dody Gunawinata

Dave Winer

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Sep 4, 2012, 9:52:20 AM9/4/12
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I gotta say I don't think that's a river. 

Your eye has to be able to scan down the left edge as you quickly scroll.

When it's two-across you can't do that -- so you have to slow down and start reading.

I really would appreciate it if the term river could mean something, and not be diluted, like so many other terms do, to be come meaningless.

Dave

dodyg

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Sep 4, 2012, 10:10:57 AM9/4/12
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Thanks for the quick feedback. I didn't know River of News refer to a specific way the news is displayed (flowing in on one column) instead of the way it behaves (flowing news). I'l change the term to something else.

What do you label the JSONP sources e.g.  http://http//static.scripting.com/houston/rivers/nyt/River3.js . Is there any specific term for it?

dodyg

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Sep 4, 2012, 10:39:45 AM9/4/12
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I changed the format of  http://hobieu.apphb.com/  to one column as well as the default template that people get when they create their own Tabbed River. It's much simpler to adhere to the term than naming a new one.


On Tuesday, September 4, 2012 3:52:21 PM UTC+2, Dave Winer wrote:

Dave Winer

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Sep 4, 2012, 10:41:09 AM9/4/12
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Excellent. I like your approach to confrontation. :-)

I try to do the same. See if there's some way to say Yes.

I saw the term "unconference" which meant something very real turned into mush by people who liked the name but didn't understand the concept.

Want to try to avoid that here. People always tell me that Google Reader can do River of News, but it can't. Same with NetNewsWire. Doesn't mean they aren't fine products, they just aren't rivers. 

dodyg

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Sep 4, 2012, 11:00:17 AM9/4/12
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  • You've been writing and talking about River of News for years now. It's pointless for me to redefine the term when I got it wrong in the first place.
  • I followed the Atom Syndication Format development back in the day and found it a big waste of energy for so little benefits. 

Dave Winer

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Sep 4, 2012, 11:02:58 AM9/4/12
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That was a different argument. They came up with a new name, which is cool. RSS didn't need any further dilution. But they saw a problem to solve that there was no demand for. They were able to create enough traction that you have to support it, but instead of cleaning up a bit of a mess, they just added to it. But they were actually a force for making RSS mean more not less. (Didn't help, people say RSS these days when they mean Atom. That's how strong it is as a concept.)

Dave

dodyg

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Sep 4, 2012, 11:16:39 AM9/4/12
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Got it. Do you know any places where I can get more River JSONP sources?

Dave Winer

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Sep 4, 2012, 11:25:00 AM9/4/12
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Jonathan Glick at Sulia tells me they're going to do it with all their lists. I've cc'd him on this email.

I want to call the format "jriver" -- btw. 

Dave

Paul Clark

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Sep 4, 2012, 1:20:56 PM9/4/12
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Dody,

Much better as a river, thanks! Having three columns that force your eyeball to move up and down isn't natural to the way we read

The functionality looks good, I can edit the sources and the styles all on the web interface and I like that level of customization. I'm very simplistic in my design tastes (http://river.havagan.com/) while Dave likes his beautiful river and feed icons.

Were you looking for feedback?

Minor: Users probably won't understand the difference between the river "Name" (the eventual URL) and the river "Title" -- at least I didn't. It may be simpler to only ask for a Title and just remove unacceptable URL characters and auto-gen the Name (URL) or else make it clear that this will be the URL.

Minor: It was a bit confusing at first why my new river (Guantanamo News: http://hobieu.apphb.com/r/Guantanamo) had all of the original site content. I thought my river wasn't created at first until I saw the title "Guantanamo" and the Edit link at the top left. After creating a new river can you take me right to the Edit/Sources page for my new river so I can start immediately adding feeds?

A great feature would be to let me enter RSS feeds as Sources instead of only accepting JSONP input. Not many news sites are providing JSON output but there are RSS feeds. You could then simply grab the RSS, parse to JSONP and feed into the river. Google offers an API for RSS to JSON conversion, but I'm not up on the details and whether it can be adapted to your needs (and you have to hope they don't eventually turn that service off: https://developers.google.com/feed/v1/jsondevguide).

Basically, do what River2 does. ;)

Regards,
Paul


On Tue, Sep 4, 2012 at 11:00 AM, dodyg <do...@silverkeytech.com> wrote:

Dody Gunawinata

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Sep 4, 2012, 1:58:31 PM9/4/12
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Hi Paul,

Thanks for taking the time to try it out.

1. I will make changes to the creation method so it's clear that the name represent url (or slug)
2. Thanks for pointing this out. I'll change this.
3. Thanks for the suggestion. An RSS aggregator is the big piece I am working on. I am bootstraping for this  http://scripting.com/stories/2012/07/25/anOpenTwitterlikeEcosystem.html so my roadmap looks roughly

= Consume Jri and produce Tabbed Rivers (done + extra modifications coming)
= Create an RSS aggregator (next big piece)
= Produce a tool to write to RSS with microblogging extensions
= Solve the issue of easy subscription and notification. 

Dody Gunawinata

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Sep 4, 2012, 2:05:46 PM9/4/12
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Typo fix

= Consume JRIVER and produce Tabbed Rivers (done + extra modifications coming) 

Paul Clark

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Sep 4, 2012, 5:16:06 PM9/4/12
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Dody,

What programming language are you using on the server back-end?

Paul

dodyg

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Sep 5, 2012, 3:06:20 AM9/5/12
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These are the stacks (all open source except the language):

Server back-end:
  • C# 4.0
  • .Net 4.0
  • ASP.Net MVC 3.0 (web framework)
  • RavenDB (document database)
  • DotLiquid (templating support)
  • AutoFac (IoC container)
  • FluentValidatoin (Validation Framework)
  • LessCss (support for parsing LESS)

Front End:
  • Bootstrap 2.10
  • Underscore.js
  • jquery 1.8.js
  • json2.js
  • modernizer.js
  • CodeMirror (for the html editor/highlighter)
  • isotope (to support arranging columns)
It can run on cloud platform like appharbor or plain Window Server. RavenDB supports clustering out of the box so we can scale it easily. The system is also stateless which helps if it needs to be run on multiple servers.

Development time so far is about 34 hours over three weeks.
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