For some time now I’ve allowed people to make “weblog” entries upon the Debian Administration website.
However this solution was suboptimal:
- Users create weblog entries, which have their own XML feed.
- Local Planet installation makes a request to http://localhost/ – for each account.
- Planet processes the XML entries and outputs the static HTML + feeds.
- Repeat from step 2 every hour.
The overhead of processing each of the blog feeds on the server side was a little too high – to the extent that making a hundred odd requests at 7 minutes past the hour was noticable if you were logged in to the server.
So I figured it made sense to skip all this, and just fetch the contents of the weblogs from the local database – where they are all stored anyway.
This immediately speeds things up. Generating the new planet now takes less than a second, total time.
It also means that I can take advantage of my knowlege of the Yawns table structure to list the number of comments upon each entry – or do other similar things.
Since the site is driven by software called “Yawns” (irony is ..) the new software is called “Yawns Planet”. There is a CVS repository here.
Start to finish this was about three hours work. But damn I love developing in perl… the hours just flew by :)