Ian Bicking: the old part of his blog

Wiki feature of the day

I couldn't do a substantive feature on Wednesday due to taxes, but I'm getting back on track. I started working on different types of pages (e.g., reST page, plain HTML page, binary image page, etc), but I realized I was over-engineering it, so I decided to put it off a bit longer. I think I want to keep to one feature/release per sit-down (where I "release" to the live wiki) -- that way I won't fall into the trap of working on something where I don't already feel comfortable with the implementation. I'm hoping that the hard problems will seem easier later. (Yesterday I did orphan and wanted page lists, but those were easy)

Thursday I implemented related terms instead. I'm still trying to understand quite what it is I'm doing with this. The basic mechanism is that you list the related terms as metadata for the page, and then those "terms" (which are really just pages) include your page as part of their content. (Why include and not just link? I'm not sure yet)

At first this just seems like backlinks, or maybe more like a wiki category, which all achieve something of the same effect without adding any new ideas. (MoinMoin uses macros to make the categories more direct, but that's just an incremental feature)

So maybe this is a distraction, but I feel like it could also be something more, specifically as it relates to aggregation. Or, more specifically, I think it could turn this into a blog fairly easily.

When the targeted terms have more features (in terms of how they include their related pages), then it starts to look like blogging software, where the term becomes the aggregation of several sub-pages (only they aren't sub-pages, because we still haven't introduced any real hierarchy).

Unfortunately there's lots of potential options for how the target term aggregates the pages, and a wiki page doesn't really support that kind of structure. It could be done in a somewhat procedural manner with markup macros, but I want to avoid those (though they probably could be done reasonably using reST's directives).

Created 17 Apr '04
Modified 14 Dec '04