Blog2009 ≫ Came home for lunch today, and the boy slept right through it

also some thoughts on twitter and musings on the web...

Very busy at the moment but feels like I'm getting stuff done, which is always nice. Lots on at work, can I afford to be out of the office Thursday and Friday? Off to FOWA1 in London those days. I only mention this to wind up chums at work who are not going really, though not wind them up too much as I need things to keep sailing smoothly in the office while I am away.

Been wondering why it's so difficult to get real threaded conversation out of twitter.com2. Every message can store the id of the message it is a reply to (see here3) so why is it so difficult to see a conversation, just like the threaded replies on popbitch4 (or indeed my own threaded goodness).

I wonder if it's just that most people don't see the benefit of a threaded conversation. When I started out threaded forums were the norm, newsgroups and probably other bulletin boards before that, and then on the web Matt's Script Archive wwwboard was king5! nme.com6's Angst was based on that before I went to work there, so for a while everything I did was based on the same code. Everything I've done since has been based on the same layout, though not the code (the last version I used was all flat files and no database, maybe it still is). When myspace and blogs became the new thing they only had the very simple tacking another comment on the bottom of the page. Probably because it's easier to implement if you don't have to keep track of who was replying to whom, but maybe because it just scales better if you simplify it. At this time I worked with a lot of people who thought that was the "right" way to do conversation online, and that threaded conversations were confusing or old hat. I'm still well into that idea, which is why I use it here (not that I get many replies, so no threading) but it's still sort of popular on popbitch too.

What was my point, where was I going with this? Oh yeah, why can't I get a conversation out of twitter? If you go through their search page7 and click on "show conversation" it seems like it ought to work, but they still don't thread it, why on earth not? I had one suggestion that as there is no "thread id" or "conversation id" in a tweet3 it's inefficient to try and group them into threads (and I should namecheck at this point). I did find this when building my first threaded forum many years ago, and did add a "thread id" to each message to make it work quickly enough. Lordy that's over ten years ago now... Anyway, however, the inefficient bit before that was selecting them all (using crazy recursion), not laying them out. Twitter and others already have the messages grouped together in conversations already, they're just laid out incorrectly.. Sort it out!

Also been thinking about multilingual websites today too, think we have cracked it now, looking forward to trying out some new stuff.

Where am I finding the time to write a long post like this, when I don't find time to write every day any more? Clare is giving the boy his bedtime feed now, dinner is in the oven, and I've mostly copied and pasted this from email and ichat conversations I've been having today...

Ooh I did write a lot didn't I? Sorry it was so dull. What about Flash Forward, did you watch it last night? We did I thought it was very good. Kind of a "star" cast for a new culty type show. I thought everyone was too accepting of what was going on, but once you get over that, looks good. Hopefully it has a defined ending, or at least focal point of six months in the future, just like Lost does not.

💬 RE: Came home for lunch today, and the boy slept right through it - 12950

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Paul Clarke's blog - I live in Hythe near Folkestone. Married to Clare + dad to two, I am a full-stack web engineer, + I do js / Node, some ruby, other languages ect ect. I like pubs, parkrun, eating, home automation + other diy jiggery-pokery, history, family tree stuff, TV, squirrels, pirates, lego, and TIME TRAVEL.