JavaBlogs Portal

Charles Miller writes:

... For example, I'd really like to harness the l33t sk1llz of the java.blogs community to create a centralised repository of our collective knowledge. All the information is out there on various weblogs, but its diffuse and mixed together with stories about our cats. A central site would give a newcomer the distilled core. I went as far as downloading and installing DSpace, to see if it could be useful. Perhaps after I've finished my manic week of studying I'll have more time to mess around with it.

This is an idea that's been out there for a while. Dominic has also mentioned doing some sort of Java.blogs RSS portal before and I've mentioned it before as a Best of Breed site...

So here's what I'm thinking. I'm willing to donate some of my bandwidth, etc on my new server to start this up. But I don't want to be stuck maintaining something that no one cares about, so give me feedback if you want this to happen. is available, but I'm not sure I want to mess with Java in the URL since Sun can get picky about their trademark. I also still own which might be appropriate also. Someone come up with something catchy.

Okay, here's my thoughts on what and how:

First, let's Keep It Simple. I've got OrionServer running now on Linux with MySQL, so that's the environment. It'll be pretty straight forward to throw a website up there with a sign up form, etc. which will save RSS feed URLs to a database. Then I'll start a Quartz scheduled process that'll go get the feeds from the DB and aggregate them on the front page. This is sort of an open approach, but the idea is that like a Wiki, you can just sign up and say that you want your blog to be included and I'll play Admin and wack abusers if any show up.

Now beyond this, I'm not sure. I don't want to recreate Slashdot or TheServerSide or JavaLobby, so I don't know if I want to bother with a forum. And I'm not sure how useful a Wiki would be, but I can throw up a Simpleweb instance in 2 minutes if someone thinks it's cool. (No one suggest SnipSnap... everything here is going to be home grown and open). Anything else?

Now this is the open way. The closed way is even easier. A group of Java bloggers (that would be YOU if you're reading this) decide who gets aggregated. I'll throw up a mailing list (or start a closed YahooGroup... whatever) and we can decide on adding/removing members via online voting. This has the advantage of ensuring quality in the feeds.

A final way would be to have members rank feeds based on their perceived quality (sort of like /. moderation)... and then viewers of the site could view/download only those feeds above a certain quality, thus it's open, but self-editing/maintaining for quality.

Tell me your thoughts.


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