Forums, Blogs, Threads, Comments… Structure!

Over on the Web2.0 Show blog, Darren Stuart asks ‘Are Blogs The New Forums?’

“Lets look at the function of a forum.

Users post messages for discussion. Users post messages discussing other messages. These discussions are normally in categorised in to sub forums.

Now lets look at the function of a Blog

A Blogger posts something interesting. Visitors post comments on the Blogger’s post. The Blogger’s posts are normally categorised and tagged.

As you can see the core functions of both Blogs and forums are almost identical.”

I totally agree! I too love forums. From usenet groups to phpBB. IMHO, the thread structure of forums are perfect for almost all communication and publication online.

Now pause for a moment to think and have a look at an OPML file 🙂

I often say that the only web software we (almost) ever needed was the remarkably influential ‘WWWBoard’ perl script, from a place called ‘Matt’s Script Archive‘. (I’m amazed it’s still there! – looking different though 😉 )I cut my coding teeth on that lot, years ago. Even hacked it make a flat-file content management system too 😉 WWWBoard was one of the earliest examples of an ‘open-source’ script that I ever encountered. Matt had other scripts too, for voting and the like. All very useful stuff. Until I found PHP 😉

Any post of anything online has certain basic attributes – a title, body text, author and date.

Having a post exist within the structure of a ‘thread’ – ‘a reply to reply’ or ‘a sub category of a sub category’ – the content immediately has context, reference, ‘a place’ – based on the details of its ‘parent’. It could be a comment to a post, a post on a forum, a reply to that post, a new user submitted script in code documenation, a comment on a comment on an area of a photo, a threaded discussion of experiences at a geographic location. Anything!

I’m actually working on something interesting in this area (I think!) – based around the upgrade to podcast.com which I am (still!) working on.

Let me say it again : It’s “OPML PLUS RSS TO THE POWER OF USERS!” 🙂

Do you catch my drift? 😉 Look up the tree!

Update: It looks like Dave Winer gets it too! !

10 Responses to “Forums, Blogs, Threads, Comments… Structure!”


  1. 1 Scooter January 4, 2007 at 8:41 pm

    Indeed – capture at the point of inspiration with implict metadata

  2. 2 Pauly January 10, 2007 at 9:58 am

    my blog is a forum, it’s all the same software, of course they’re the same thing… a blog is usually just a forum where only the user with the right permissions can start a new thread. My blog / forum is unusual in that generally it has no replies to messages though…

  3. 3 marionxlx January 26, 2007 at 4:02 pm

    hi 2 all.
    hello world! It is nice site. Keep working!
    best regards
    i found you here http://google.com ^^

  4. 4 CynthiaS January 29, 2007 at 8:15 am

    I am trying to find the best way to get a proper value of things being put on ebay.
    Is the best way simply to look at “finished auctions” or are there services. These are both electronics and thing I’ve had since childhood?

  5. 5 Antoine February 5, 2007 at 6:54 am

    Hi! Yesterday I’ve heard a song on the radio, there were such words[url=http://www.freewebs.com/fireplace-gallery]:[/url] [url=http://www.angelfire.com/planet/electric-fireplace]”[/url]electric narcotic” repeated many times[url=http://electricfireplace-mx.blogspot.com].[/url] The style is very much alike Daft Punk, maybe somebody knows if it’s thier new song?
    Thanks

  6. 7 Komeddyk March 7, 2007 at 8:28 pm

    Somebody using pheromons to attract women, whether is real it?
    Where they can be got?

  7. 9 Green April 25, 2007 at 12:05 pm

    Hi Sam! Photos i send on e-mail.
    Green


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Who is this ‘kosso’ anyway?

I am a 'Createc'. A creative technologist, entrepreneur/ hacker/ geek. Worked on building things on the web for over 12 years.

Used to work at BBC News interactive and created the publishing and delivery systems for video news to get distributed on huge screens in major railway stations around the country.

I left the BBC to become CTO / sole-lead architect/developer at podcast.com for three years.

I have now left them to build a start up a new system called 'Phreadz', which is a 'Social Multimedia Conversation Network', integrating everything that is 'V.I.T.A.L' to us on the web. Video, Images, Text, Audio and Links.

I built the whole thing my myself. I programmed every line of code and positioned every pixel. I'm looking forward to attracting an hiring new members of the team to help me out! :)

There are currently over 1000 happy and helpful beta testers on the system so far and one client of a white-labelled solution.



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