Flutterby™! : The decline of /.?

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The decline of /.?

2002-02-12 00:56:45+00 by Dan Lyke 12 comments

What does it mean when a quick browse through /. reader comments shows them to be less technically informed than the Fucked Company reader comments?

[ related topics: New Economy moron ]

comments in ascending chronological order (reverse):

#Comment made: 2002-02-21 05:35:14+00 by: meuon

Slashdot has become mindless morons masterbating midst messages muses make

Fucked Company is worrying warriors of dotcom wars wondering where work went.

#Comment made: 2002-02-21 05:35:14+00 by: ebradway

Three years ago I had trouble finding time to actually work as I thoroughly read the postings on Slashdot. A two years ago I started reading only level-5 comments because the rest was drivel. A year ago I stopped reading comments unless I really though I'd find something interesting in them. Now I don't even go to Slashdot unless someone else links to it. Their decline follows the dot-com decline directly.

#Comment made: 2002-02-21 05:35:15+00 by: ghasty

I still find the initial postings interesting (although usually a day or two behind other interesting sites) but seldom delve into any of the comments...now my /. reading only takes about 5 minutes per day...so the drivel is now a "feature" that helped make my day more productive...

#Comment made: 2002-02-21 05:35:15+00 by: petej

If you think /. is bad, you should see what's happened to USENET!

#Comment made: 2002-02-21 05:35:15+00 by: ghasty

Atleast we have google to get the older stuff on usenet

#Comment made: 2002-02-21 05:35:15+00 by: was

You need the unofficial slashdot digest: http://www.alterslash.org/. Has the top 5 highly rated comments from every thread.

#Comment made: 2002-02-12 20:50:08+00 by: ebradway [edit history]

Afterslash looks cool. Usenet went to hell years ago.

Back in 1992 I wasted three to four hours a day keeping up with just a few threads on The WELL. A practice I haven't had time to maintain in recent years.

The biggest shame is that the content keeps shifting protocols. USENET has become a filesharing protocol (as opposed to gopher - and Morpheus is infinitely better). The discussion board content has moved to the web (Flutterby!). It pains me every time I start to implement a web-based discussion board when I think that this was all perfected years ago in news.

#Comment made: 2002-02-21 05:35:17+00 by: petej

Another thing USENET got right was a real-time, peer-to-peer syndication protocol. Nothing has really come close to NNTP run by innd for shotgunning a story through a bunch of affiliated servers. While I buy the content-describing parts of RSS, the protocol itself pales in comparison to NNTP. What would probably make RSS work better would be to move it across pipelined NNTP through an afiliate network. What would you like to bet that an architecture like this would scale better than weblogs.com?

#Comment made: 2002-02-21 05:35:17+00 by: Dan Lyke

So as much as I really really hoped that my days adminning an INN server back when I left Highertech.net for California in 1995, if I put up a Flutterby news server, would it be of interest?

And anyone got a simple "using Gnus with multiple news servers" tutorial?

#Comment made: 2002-02-21 05:35:17+00 by: John Anderson

dan: yes. hell yes. doubleplus yes.

as far as the tutorial: to add groups on a second server, do 'G m', put in the group name ('flutterby.sex.toys.water-cannon', or whatever), type 'nntp' for the method, then give the server address. (yes, there are other ways, ways that let you browse the list of groups on the second server instead of having to know what you want ahead of time, but you ask for simple, you get simple.)

#Comment made: 2002-02-21 05:35:17+00 by: meuon

Way back in the early days.. we even setup a news server for a local college educational system..classroom forums and such. It has incredible useful features for the technically capable. As a file sharing medium which it was never intended for, it has become the biggest waste of bandwidth on the planet as materials have become short lived and are repeatedly posted, because the size of the groups with binaries is so large you can't effectively keep much history.

Once upon a time we were chastized for keeping text groups less than 6 months or a year....

Today, "news" is the only thing we outsource.

#Comment made: 2002-02-21 05:35:20+00 by: petej

Conversant has NNTP access to the discussions. It's fine. I'm not really looking to read Flutterby via NNTP; rather I was thinking about NNTP and INN as part of a syndication infrastructure, instead of trying to use XML-RPC and HTTP. My guess is that NNTP supports most, if not all, of the functions that would be required, so XML-RPC wouldn't be necessary, and INN is pretty well-tuned to pass traffic quickly. I don't have this thought out well yet (and someone else probably does, and will tell me to sit down and shut up soon), but it seems to me that there's two sides to the syndication thing -- collection and reading. Pipelined NNTP over INN seems to me to be a pretty interesting start for the collection side, but I think folks should be free to read via NNTP, email, website, IRC, AIM, or whatever, so I've only got half of it. A bunch of NNTP servers could serve as a net-wide cache, but I think it's important to be able to read with more than one tool.