Tuesday, October 30, 2007


A lot going on last weekend. Lots of little things (look and feel), and a couple of big ones:

Like-Minded is in. This will filter stories based on what other people like you voted for. So it matches you with people that had a high % of similar votes, and then only shows what those people voted for. As most people only like to hear what the believe, this should be nice :)

Story Preview is done. This allows a user to click a icon next to the main story name, and actually SEE the story. I'm not exactly sure why other sites aren't doing this... One of my users is new to social news. He asked me why, after he clicked on a link to a story, there wasn't a vote button available? I personally automatically open stories in new windows on tabs. And I don't want to automatically open a new window on Nozzl. Or frame it, like Propeller does.

I've been thinking about improving story viewing and voting for a while, and came up with a preview. This isn't a thumb nail preview like a lot of sites do - it's a in-window modal popup that has the story info at the top (where the user can VOTE), and then the actual story, fully readable, below.

I think this has a really large potential - it should make it much easier to read and then vote for stories. And it's slick :)

Sunday, October 21, 2007

More done

I've been VERY busy with the Day Job - had to go to a week long meeting, so very little time to work on Nozzl.

While I managed to get a nasty cold last week, I managed to get a few hours in today. Most of it was just working on CSS and the look and feel of the site. I"m somewhat happy with it:

Still got a ways to go, but it's a lot tighter now. And I think generally looks better.

As I've still got a small number of users, I needed a way to seed more votes on stories that are useful (as I want NEW people to find use on the site). This is NOT something I am planning on using when I have more users. But will be handy for now. It's a .NET Windows app that can list X hours of stories... and then I can view each story, and vote Y times for each one (using the base ID).

I could actually make a nice little app like this for users to use, I guess... have to think about that a bit.

Just did the deploy (almost midnight now, and my cough is doing down hill).

I've still got to flush out the user profile (Voting, friends, voted stories, commented stories). Then not sure what else, but continue to work on the look and feel.

Saturday, October 6, 2007


Ah, 5 AM Saturday morning, and I'm just wrapping up. Another fun one :)

Day job got very busy this week, so haven't had a chance to work on nozzl until late last night, after getting home from dinner.

Got a LOT done. More clean up (mostly on the load)... AND I have the wiki working!

As stories make the front page (configurable threshold), I auto-send the info to the wiki. The Title, original URL, and description.

Any stories that have a wiki entry now show a link next to the story info. Anyone can edit the wiki info. My hope is that for important stories, people will go edit and add real info. This could become a fairly useful source of information, over time.

I'm using screwturn wiki, which I've used before. Very nice, GNU, all in .NET 2.0/C#. Had to do some SLIGHT modifications to the code base. The actual story insert happens direct to the DB, so it's very quick.

We'll see what happens - this may end up being something people don't use much. But if it gets used, with REAL info, and if the top stories over the long term build up a bunch of info, then the wiki itself could become a great history of what happened.

Wednesday, October 3, 2007

Comment Voting

Got comment voting in tonight. Still need to "bury" comments (on - vote) and report comments.

Beyond that, the last big piece is user profile.

But i THINK site is fairly usable now.

Showed it to Donald, who has a few friends looking at it - so I have several people on the site. Need to start to draw more in at this point.

Monday, October 1, 2007


Added Newsvine - looks like fairly good social news site. A lot of the smaller sites seem to be mostly spam, so I'm trying to be careful what I add. Still looking for a couple of more - but that's it, as the "All" page will slide more than I want.

Did a bunch more cleanup, on both the web site and the Loader. The Loader is URLEncoding title and description now, which is a must-have. Old stories will still show ????, but new ones should work fine now.

I am getting the Author name and URL for Newsvine. I am NOT bypassing the main link (I actually wrote the code for the loader to get the real url, but pulled it). And I am now getting the real URL on Reddit.

I'm trying to be careful to not annoy the sites I'm feeding off of. I REALLY hope they won't be, as THEY are just feeding off of other sites. And I'm giving them full credit (by linking back), and not changing what they have (kinda acting like Google news). The deal on reddit is they are not providing anything on the link but the forward - so I'm just getting the real link, and using that.

Both Propeller and Newsvine actually return something on the internal URL... so I am not bypassing them. Now. Will see how that goes. I also have code that will get the real link for Propeller, so can switch both if need be.

Also added duggmirror and google cache on all links that are likely to have them.