Help with making a personal feed using SaaS
By DaveLevy on Aug 07, 2008
Making a personal feed using friendfeed
I have for a while tried to create a personal feed of stuff I put on the internet, in the hope that someone might be interested. Historically this has been a planet but I now have a FriendFeed account. I am considering aggregating my bookmarks from del.icio.us into the feed and wonder what my correspondents, that's you that is, think. The reason I worry is that I issue a lot of bookmarks.
The current feed is at My Planet, (hover over the link for a preview). It has been implemented using an old version of planet planet, and so is available in RSS, ATOM and HTML (?). However it has a couple of problems (see below). One of my facebook correspondents pointed me at FriendFeed. Prior to finding this, Richard Morgan pointed me at secondbrian.net, (see below). One of the things that makes friendfeed so useful is that it has a generic feed service, so if their specific services, and they have a lot, don't suit then you can use the generic service, which is how I subscribe this blog, and my bliki to the friendfeed.
The ones I have syndicated at planet/davelevy and not yet syndicated on friend feed include my bookmarks at delicious.com, which is the nearest thing I have to a microblog. You have to work at it and it tells you what I'm reading on the internet i.e. what I am thinking about not what I am doing. I also syndicate my digg posts at my planet and have displayed it below.
This leaves my plazes feed as unforwarded. Since I use the plazer, each time I move computer or network, it generates a new plaze. This can lead to many entries for the same place on a single day. I expect that people want to track location, and most importantly timezone, not my connections. The plazes feed needs a filter to restrict the feed to first of day and change of location and I have considered using planet or venus to do this.
The one feed that I think would add to the Friendfeed is my bookmarks. On some days, when researching something I may write number of bookmarks in quite short periods. Is this a burden to my correspondents?
When done, I can pump friend feed back through planet for any legacy users. Perhaps I should check its actually used by anyone other than me.
Some comments about my sites and feeds
My twitter feed, I restrict to comments about my connectivity to the world wide web and location, I may use it to notify people about blog articles some time in the future, but decent phones should have RSS feed readers these days, sadly mine doesn't; Vodafone don't want us using RSS feed readers. I expect that most of my twitter followers know where the blog(s) are. (I quite like being notified of people's new blog articles so for those of you who tweet me about their blogs don't stop, and if I like it maybe my correspondents will also.)
I don't & never did use Digg that frequently. My current use of bloglines/google reader has changed the way I find this sort of stuff, but I rarely used it as a consumer, although the Digg Labs interfaces were pretty cool. With Digg, I need to consider if my use warrants syndicating it, although now I am using software as a service its all free to me.
The other feed I want to test is my Amazon wish list. My facebook experience is that the UK wish list is different in some way to the US & German one; the facebook application doesn't work for me since I have multiple wishlists on the account. Lets see how these feed aggrgators manage?
What's wrong with (my) Planet?
I use planet 2.1; it and my OS lack the BSD database. So I am missing any upgrades since that date. I know that the ATOM transformation is a a problem. the ATOM feed is broken on my instance. I may try and fix this at some time, but in the mean time, I must disable the hyperlink. Further more I have difficulty implementing Plazes and Twitter in the planet feed. For the plazes feed there is a formatting issue, and with Twitter I have a DNS resolution issue. Both these are problems with my configuration and not bugs in the feed services. Well, maybe the Twitter problem is some feature of the twitter platform but wget works well enough on a Solaris platform and Alec Muffet is developing a Sun people twitter planet, so it can be done.