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   RE: [xml-dev] RSS beyond the Blog: 1992 or 1999? - was Re: [xml-dev] hu

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  • To: "Bullard, Claude L \(Len\)" <clbullar@ingr.com>,"Michael Champion" <mc@xegesis.org>,"XML DEV" <xml-dev@lists.xml.org>
  • Subject: RE: [xml-dev] RSS beyond the Blog: 1992 or 1999? - was Re: [xml-dev] hurry GenX...
  • From: "Joshua Allen" <joshuaa@microsoft.com>
  • Date: Thu, 18 Mar 2004 14:30:18 -0800
  • Thread-index: AcQNNjk3Ok3CPX0AR0u0wRaN/vw3sgAAJzfA
  • Thread-topic: [xml-dev] RSS beyond the Blog: 1992 or 1999? - was Re: [xml-dev] hurry GenX...

> you WOULD use RSS syndication for record level notifications. 
>  So you don't see a scale issue with that?

Well, I think RSS is best used for situations where you want to keep
track of events for a relatively broad group of participants which are
updated relatively infrequently.  The classic example is monitoring a
list of 20 friends who update their individual websites once every two
weeks -- aggregators help, because you don't want to spend hours a day
trolling through all of those web sites manually, especially when the
majority of the page hits show no changes.

So I think that bugs and file checkins meet that criteria.  Broad in the
sense that, to monitor the bug lists and checkins, I have to use two
different tools -- so monitoring these things causes context switches
for me and is a high cost in time.  Infrequent in the sense that I don't
get enough bugs to make it a full-time job, and code checkins are
something that I normally don't look to closely at, but I want to know
what's getting updated.

As far as scale goes, I'm not too worried.  It's true that we already
have alternatives which have (in most cases) better scalability profiles
-- for example, I also get e-mail automatically when certain checkins
occur.  Theoretically, this would be one SMTP connection (or less) per
checkin required to be initiated by the server, while my RSS reader may
bang the server 20 time to get that one checkin.  But on the other hand,
I get lots of those e-mails that I have no idea how to shut off, and
after multiple unsubscribes I route them to my garbage.  And my earlier
post to this thread about edge caches, caching proxies, and "push"
should better explain how I feel about web scalability.  In many cases,
"pull" will outscale "push" by a long shot, and it's doubtful that
anyone really needs the currency of "push".  I have seen a few cases,
like inventory reports for diamond sales, but that's about it.


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