Sunday, November 13, 2005


I've already mentioned Suprglu in a couple of posts (here and here, in fact), but it also came to mind when I recently revisited this exchange across the Library Clips and Data Mining blogs on managing conversations across blogs.

One of the key problems I think is that each blog post should be able to stand as a post in its own right, yet also contribute to a conversation ionvolving one or more other blogs. [In case this ramble needs to refer back to this, let's say each blog post can act as a freestanding conversational node.]

The cross-referral between blog posts/conversational nodes can be managed through formal Trackbacks, or informally through comments ("I blogged about something similar *here*"...).

But are there any other ways? I've been thinking about email a lot, lately (and hope to post something exciting(?!) on this topic on my other blog in the next couple of days) and wondered whether a cc: convention would work...

CC:? exactly? Well, consider Suprglu - it aggregates posts from a variety of feeds in date order to produce a derivative blog. Now, if we want to be able to read through a 'blogversation' , it's a pain following Trackback links. The Library Clips suggestion of a Conversation Exchange provides for a centralised collection of pings relating to a particular conversation, and I suppose (though I don't think it's mentioned) that this list could then provide a river of posts in a single feed reader.

My take is very similar to this, though it tries to develop a different metaphor. How about if we send a copy of our blog post to a derivative blog? (I know the scope for spam is horrendous...) That is, when I make a post in part as a contribution to a conversation, I cc: a copy of the post to the blog posts I am conversing with...or more likely, I cc: a copy of my post to a derivative blog where all the posts in the conversation can be viewed in one place.

To get the original post at the start of the derivative blog, the original author would add a cc:Blog link that, when it is polled the first time, creates a new derived blog, sends a copy of the post to a new derived blog as the first entry, and returns a unique ID for that conversation. The erson cc:Blogging the post then sends a copy of their post to the derivative blog.

The cc:Blog link on this second post, if polled, will return the ID of the derivative blog/conversation the post is contributing to...

To view the whole conversation, a reader simply has to visit the derived blog page.

Hmmm - much easier probably to set up a Coversation Exchange and provide an easy way for people access the OPML feed and read all the posts in a conversation in a single page...



Blogger bosko said...

Interesting post. I blogged about the need for tracking conversations in blog comments and how unnecessarily difficult it currently is. I'm not sure I understand your idea and how it involves SuprGlu (or a personal media aggregator).

An RSS-enabled Personal Media Aggregator

2:00 PM  
Blogger Tony Hirst said...

SuprGlu was part of my orginal inspiration, but the implementation of cc:Blog probably wouldn't work in it (or something like peoplefeeds) straightforwardly...

What I imagined (can I remember correctly now?!) was something akin to creating a blog on the fly to handle a particular blogversation (yuck - I need another word....).

The first email creates the blog, replies etc are appended to it, with links to comments/follow on posts perhaps being listed down the side of a particular persistent page for a post that occurs at an arbitrary point in the conversation. (This is one way of coping with comments on comments posted in a multidimensional, nonlinear time ordered way)

I need to have a think about whether I could prototype this using tags and a custom viewer...

re your feed for thought post on RSS comment feeds this is yet another area perhaps where feed annotation streams may come in handy

4:04 PM  
Blogger shahzad said...

Very Interesting post its much easier probably to set up a Coversation Exchange and provide an easy way for people access the OPML feed.

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5:53 AM  

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