[foaf-dev] Re: Prototyping a decentralized graph

Danny Ayers danny.ayers at gmail.com
Tue Aug 21 12:43:08 BST 2007


Marvellous!

[cc'ing foaf-dev]

On 21/08/07, Anthony Romano <dominatus at gmail.com> wrote:
>
> I wanted to give an update on progress I made tonight.
>
> I've moved the code to openfriendformat.com, the generator now lives
> there, off the Tabber servers. The generator now makes a FOAF document
> instead of XFN. I decided it was a better format what what this is
> trying to accomplish.
>
> Anyway, there may be a few problems with the FOAF, I'd appreciate it
> if anyone pointed out errors...
>
> http://openfriendformat.com/foaf/gen.php?account=dominatus&network=digg
>
> What that says is, given user dominatus on digg, find me all related
> accounts on the net and all his friends from those accounts. As you
> can see by the FOAF it found matching accounts on Twitter and
> Delicious. It does this with *no database* access or support what-so-
> ever. It's doing this dynamically. It caches the results for 24 hours
> to avoid heavy server load.
>
> You can play around with it here: http://openfriendformat.com/foaf/
>
> Again, any user name should work with this, the more networks and
> friends you have on those networks the better this works.
>
>
> On Aug 20, 3:10 pm, Anthony  Romano <domina... at gmail.com> wrote:
> > Yeah, Tabber I feel like is a building block, though I do think
> > OpenFriendFormat, when I flesh out the idea could be a solution to the
> > actual problem. At least, I think the problem that is.
> >
> > When finished OpenFriendFormat would be able to accept a digg account,
> > an openid, or just an online handle and return to you a list of
> > connected friends. Now, it won't be able to do two way (that is,
> > someone has you as a friend but you dont have them as one), because
> > that would require indexing about 1000 million billion gigabytes of
> > information, but instead will be generated on the fly. But the real
> > question is, do we even want that data? SteveJobs would have thousands
> > and thousands of friends if we indexed his Twitter in this way, but
> > SteveJobs does not actually have all of those friends.
> >
> > Unless of course I'm missing something and unaware of a glaring hole
> > in my logic. Which is definitely possible, I haven't read every single
> > thing to do with this yet though I have read a good deal.
> >
> > On Aug 20, 3:03 pm, "David Recordon" <record... at gmail.com> wrote:
> >
> > > Hey Anthony,
> > > Was really cool how simple it was to login with OpenID and then have
> > > it suck in my Digg contacts when I told it to.  I think it is a
> > > different part of the overall problem that we're all trying to solve,
> > > but guessing will definitely be building on each other's work.
> >
> > > --David
> >
> > > On 8/20/07, Anthony Romano <domina... at gmail.com> wrote:
> >
> > > > Hello
> >
> > > > A little introduction. My name is Anthony Romano, I am the founder and
> > > > lead engineer of Tabber.org, a social network aggregator.
> >
> > > > So a lot of talk has been occurring recently on social network
> > > > portability, and being a social network aggregator, I've decided to
> > > > through my hat in the ring.
> >
> > > > I began prototyping a decentralized (i.e. it follows links and parses
> > > > data on the fly) graph builder. You can find it atwww.tabber.org/offtest.php
> >
> > > > I also bought the domainwww.openfriendformat.com. Originally I was
> > > > going to publish the graph in a new microformat but I've since decided
> > > > it would be best to use hCard+XFN. Right now the results are just
> > > > published as XFN links in an unordered list.
> >
> > > > The generator I made does not require you to belong to Tabber, it is
> > > > completely independent from it. It does not even touch the Tabber
> > > > database. You are able to query on several networks or find results
> > > > from all supported networks. If the generator finds common friends
> > > > between two supported networks it groups them in a single ul. In other
> > > > words, if I say "given user dominatus on network digg" it will grab
> > > > all my friends from digg, and then search for all dominatus' on all
> > > > other supported networks, and if it finds common friends, it will
> > > > group them. If you said "given user dominatus on network all" then it
> > > > will search all networks and compare all friends and present them in
> > > > logical groups.
> >
> > > > The problem I think, is that the user needs the ability to "claim" the
> > > > results, preferably through the use of OpenID. In otherwords if I say
> > > > "given user dominatus.myopenid.com on network openid" I should be able
> > > > to generate results that the user specifies. That is, a site needs to
> > > > exist that uses OpenID as a login and allows the user to add links to
> > > > their various social networks. Now we can say with 100% assurance that
> > > > the user has these friends and these accounts. It also solves the
> > > > problem of a user being joebob on Twitter but joebob22 on Digg.
> >
> > > > Tabber is one of these sites, but I think its important this effort be
> > > > left open and not owned by anyone in particular, as Tabber is a player
> > > > in the field and should not be the owner of all information. One
> > > > solution I had was open sourcing and hosting the aggregator on
> > > > openfriendformat.com. Then, maintaining not only a list of social
> > > > networks it manually searches, but also a list of sites, like Tabber,
> > > > but open to anyone who conforms to the standard, who when fed an
> > > > OpenID will return a list of friends. The aggregator on
> > > > OpenFriendFormat would then search all the social networks, Digg,
> > > > Twitter, etc, and also all of these "trusted" aggregators (if there is
> > > > an OpenID given). It will then aggregate these results and present
> > > > them out.
> >
> > > > So if one were to have an OpenID, it would search a list of these
> > > > aggregators, which would be maintained on the openfriendformat
> > > > homepage. This is similar to stores in OpenID. There are many stores
> > > > to use and the user can pick any. In this way, So if the user wants to
> > > > "claim" his OpenID friends he merely signs up for one of these
> > > > aggregators and starts building his graph.
> >
> > > > In the more common situation of not having an OpenID, the FOSS
> > > > aggregator sitting on openfriendformat.com would search all of the non-
> > > > aggregation sites, similar to what it does now. We could also support
> > > > querying the aggregators since not everyone has an OpenID. So for
> > > > example, if we know user dominatus on network digg, we can start by
> > > > hitting all the aggregators with a query saying, "do you have any info
> > > > on a user with a digg account". If they do, they could give us back a
> > > > list of friends, which could be included in the results. It's
> > > > important to note though that the accounts should be verified if they
> > > > are to be returned, otherwise people will start to claim  "stevejobs"
> > > > on twitter and start spamming it up.
> >
> > > > What are everyones thoughts on this. You can try out the OFF Test site
> > > > if you want, obviously its still in active development. The code I
> > > > have is independent from Tabber's code base so I have no problem open
> > > > sourcing it and putting it on openfriendformat.com. If anyone wants to
> > > > make suggestions or help out, let me know.
>
>


-- 

http://dannyayers.com


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