[TAG] Time to drop the Site Map?
Benjamin A. Okopnik
ben at linuxgazette.net
Thu Oct 6 05:51:46 MSD 2005
On Wed, Oct 05, 2005 at 04:44:39PM -0700, Heather wrote:
> On Tue, Oct 04, 2005 at 10:59:42PM -0400, Benjamin A. Okopnik wrote:
> > On Tue, Oct 04, 2005 at 10:58:50AM -0700, Mike Orr wrote:
> > > [For the Mailbag.]
> (for the record I read the replies in this thread and on the editor's list
> before replying.)
> > > We (LG's editors) are thinking about deleting the Site Map page, and would
> > > like to get readers' input on it.
> > Slight correction, at least from my perspective: I'd like to get *TAG's*
> > input on it. Readers, well... there's no way to get a reasonable-sized
> > sample,
> The most obvious mechanism to get a reply on this from the *readers and NOT
> the gang* is to post a query to the readers at large in The Mailbag and/or
> encourage commentary back about it in the TAG blurb. At least then we know
> that any responses come from people who actually read the current issue
> without having the special interest of being contributors and staff.
Right, but the sample that we'll get back would not be, as I've
mentioned, representative (estimate number of readers; calculate a
precentage for even 50% confidence in the result. Estimate the number of
actual replies we'll get, based on past experience. Anybody care to bet
that we won't get even 1% of the necessary number?) As well, the only
people you'll hear from are those who absolutely hate the idea, or just
like to see themselves write; people who don't mind or even like the
idea have no reason to do so.
Ergo, we can't generate any kind of a meaningful statistic.
> Being staff I *suppose* I could have replied on the editors list but, TAG's
> where I live around here, so I'm saying my piece here.
> I use the site index, when I kindasorta remember a title and approximately
> what year it was in. I use the Knowledgebase, when I flat out forgot the
> title but remember the general category. I use the Search widget, when I'm
> buzzword hunting or just poking around for somehting fun to read (which is
> sort of like buzzword hunting, only shooting at cans I set up out there
> instead of game to bring down - buzzwords make fine eats, if you hunt them
> in the right season). In short I use all these means, even if it seems
> overkill to have more than one way to get at things - it's an advantage we
> as a webzine can offer that paper magazines cannot easily do without...um..
> adding a website.
> If you like we could split it into a page a year. That ought to keep
> individual pages down to a dull roar. Scrolling long can be a bitch. It
> wouldn't make the tarball any smaller though... actually, it might, if you
> consider that past years (which aren't changing) could go into Base, and
> only the sitemap "toc" and the page for the current uear would need an
> update. If you want help planning a cleaner style for it I don't mind
> chiming in, or taking Thomas up on his offer to help tweak it.
Hmm, so far I'm only hearing voices for keeping it. Well, if we don't
get a whole bunch of people suddenly voting 'uti rogas' instead of
'antiquo', then how about this: instead of building the thing into the
tarball, we remove the function that builds the static page from our
scripts and instead turn it into a CGI script that will generate a live
index of issues (I realize that "site map" is easier to say, but that's
not what the thing *is*, really) for anybody that wants it. This would
reduce the tarball size, but keep the functionality.
* Ben Okopnik * Editor-in-Chief, Linux Gazette * http://linuxgazette.net *
More information about the TAG