Interview: Dave Winer | 2 | WebReference

Interview: Dave Winer | 2


Interview with Dave Winer

WR> Is there a way to group/filter similar RSS feeds together? Like Meerkat does?

DW> Hmmm. The standard disclaimer applies. We just shipped the first release, and we're going to get a little contemplative and think before adding the next round of features. It seems that grouping is something that could very naturally be done with the outliner and OPML.

WR> I like the post feature. Explain to our readers how it works.

DW> OK. Radio is also a blogging tool, patterned after the easy to use centralized blogging tools like Blogger. Blog blog blog. We drank the Kool Aid.

Manila, our server-based product, is much more powerful, Radio's blogging tool is based around items and days and is browser-based, but the content remains on your machine, so you can publish it anywhere you want. Also, since Radio is a Web server, you can leave it turned on when you travel, and still have the convenience of publishing at an Internet cafe, airport, at school or work, wherever. I understand that this won't be for everyone. Some machines are behind firewalls, or service agreements may not allow some people to run servers, but first you had to have the chicken and then maybe some eggs will break. ;->

Since every blog item is also in the RSS version of the blog, importing into other tools is just a matter of reading RSS, which is XML of course, without the HTML markup.

WR> In your docs it says in addition to reading the news periodically, you can create your own weblog on your hard drive, using the Radio Userland server. How does the DNS work for that with dynamically-assigned IP addresses? How can users find your weblog?

DW> That's what Upstreaming is for. Solves the problem neatly.

Also, by default your weblog is listed on the Updates page on UserLand.Com, along with the Manila sites, so people will find out about your blog the same way they have in the past.

WR> Is there a way to search old news stories?

DW> Yes, but not through the browser interface. Bring Radio to the front, then choose myUserLandData.root from the Window menu. Put the cursor on "stories," and then choose Find from the Edit menu. It works much like the Find command in a word processor.

Of course it would be nice to have a browser-based interface for this. And this is where I get to say that Radio is first and foremost a development environment. It's very easy to work in, and supports all kinds of protocols and formats. We see the "desktop website" functionality in Radio as sample code for developers to use as inspiration for their own desktop website projects based on SOAP, XML-RPC, RSS, OPML, and whatever comes along next year. Our job, if this works, is to add features to the environment, fix bugs, and document things. We really want to see a developer community rise to build out the functionality of this stuff.

Further Reading


Created: March 12, 2001
Revised: March 12, 2001