AniDB Community Features - Discussion

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exp
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AniDB Community Features - Discussion

Post by exp » Fri Mar 02, 2007 7:51 pm

well,

we're currently thinking about introducing new features which would promote the community aspects of AniDB (which don't really exist atm :P).

this thread is meant as a place to discuss potential improvements we could make.

One planned change would be the introduction of a special "user page" for each user. Somewhat like a profile page on many forum sites. It would be a place where a user can (optionally) provide some information about his/herself. It would also be a place where we could collect all the interesting links for visitors (i.e. mylist, votes, reviews, ... of that user)

So one question would now be what kind of data we want to show on that "user page". I.e. what could a user add and what do we already have in the db anyway.

most likely included:
- gender
- free text

random ideas (never mind potential silliness, this is meant to start a discussion):
- age/birthday
- nationality
- location (free text)
- username on forum/wiki/tracker/irc
- first anime seen
- watching anime since
- genre/category preferences (free text or dropdown selection) (might be usefull data for anime hint too) (maybe with weights, also negative listings, i.e. "dislikes genre horror")
- url?
- pic? (maybe only for adv. users)
- public email, icq/jabber/aim/yahoo/msn/...
- extra top5 anime selection (not related to anime votes, top5 for most users would be unsorted based on anime votes, very few users use fine grained votes)
- top5 manga selection
- top5 anime characters? (maybe available via votes in chardb someday)
- top5 seiyus? (same as above)
- top5 OST/song? (maybe available via votes in ostdb someday)
- top5 producers?
- ...

things which we already have in db and which could be listed:
- user's anime top10 / bottom10
- user's group top10 (by vote or file count) / bottom10
- user's last collected/watched anime
- all kinds of contribution stats
- member since
- user level
- time spend watching anime (total/avg per month/avg per week/this month/this week) (would break for people who do not update their mylists regularly)
- most time ever spend on anime watching within one week
- avg amount of anime watched by day of week
- oldest unwatched anime in mylist
- oldest/latest wishlist entries
- buddies
- fav. reviewers
- latest reviews/votes
- vote distribution
- latest files collected
- latest files watched
- which anidb features is this user using regularly (data not yet collected, but might be very interesting to get a better idea about largely unknown features, if we collect it, we could also display it on the user's page, dunno if that'd be interesting though... on the other hand it might promote exploration of yet unknown features, i.e. if you have a stat like "you seem know only 18% of anidbs features")
- ...

some of this information could also be shown in form of graphs.

there are probably tons of other things... so spam away :P

BYe!
EXP

Charles
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Post by Charles » Sat Mar 03, 2007 2:13 am

Improving the community:

1. Complete integration of AniDB user accounts with the forum with a consistent skin. Maybe with Anime Reactor, too? I don't know. What a monotonous task to do! You would have a URL to MyList or whatever below your posts.

2. Removing the robots.txt might help drive traffic to the site, more users and thus a possibly better community. However, I understand that this might be bandwidth consuming and we'd all like to keep AniDB advertisement free. So I'd suggest blocking robots from everything except the general summary of an anime show and the front page of AniDB. I'm assuming that the reason robots are blocked is because of excessive bandwidth usage, though.

General interactivity:

3. I like the way you have implemented short URLs for anime titles by looking it up by ID but I think you could improve on this with Wikipedia like URLs. Not for the reason of SEO but for the reason of convenience. Anime IDs are too hard to remember, even if they're only around 4 digits. I like being able type wikipedia.org/wiki/<article_name>, even though I have a search engine box in Fx for that purpose. Of course, it'd be non-trivial since you're not just creating an index. You'll have synonyms to deal with and possibly correcting typos (soundex, levenstein instantly come to mind) but that's the challenge I guess!

4. Javascript overlaying current sorting features, such as ratings. I hate having to wait for a whole new page request, since it's rather slow. But I think I'd hate it even more if you broke functionality of Lynx when I'm using SSH at college. So please don't break it for the none javascript users!

5. Removal of comments opening in a popup window when discussing a fansub group.

Developers:

6. An authentication system for handling sessions across multiple domains. This would be particularly useful for the AniDB forum signature project (if anyone ever decides to do it for free) because you're presented with the problem of not trusting the developer with AniDB's user table|database or the ability to manipulate AniDB.info domain cookies. However, the chances of phishing may increase so definitely think it over.

Many sites implement it (notable ones: Google, Microsoft/Live.com). Here's a page explaining Google's implementation: http://code.google.com/apis/accounts/Au ... bApps.html

7. Lastly, something that'd be nice for when people end up developing stylesheets. There's no block element for the title "AniDB" or logo, or whatever you may call it. When designing a skin you end up using really (IMO) silly hacks, such as #layout-search (or element of your choice) having a background-image positioned to the left.

I think the integration of AniDB user accounts with the forum would improve the community the most.

As for features? Geez! I'm still discovering new features everyday, you know.

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Rar
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Post by Rar » Sat Mar 03, 2007 3:17 am

Exp was asking for easy bits of pointless bloat, not practical suggestions for making a real difference, sheesh.

#1 Really would be good, but non-trivial: phpbb, mediawiki, mantis are all php but totally non interoperable, then mixing in anidb's crufty perl? Also stuff's on different servers.
#2 I've argued for in the past, though more from search grounds than desire for more hits.
#3 Doable without much pain, but not a clear cut benefit given the way anidb works.
#4 I wrote code that does this. Server side page generation still needs cleaning up though before it's rollable outable.
#5 All popups are close to being profile-set behaviour, once again, needs serverside work finished.
#6 I think this is basically a non-issue, we're not exactly a bank atm.
#7 Whether or not there's a logo on every page is a style issue, it clearly doesn't need to be in the markup.

So... good input, but most of it probably isn't going anywhere fast. If you want expanded answers on anything, ask.

Rar

Charles
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Post by Charles » Sat Mar 03, 2007 4:10 am

#1 Really would be good, but non-trivial: phpbb, mediawiki, mantis are all php but totally non interoperable, then mixing in anidb's crufty perl? Also stuff's on different servers.
Understandable.
#6 I think this is basically a non-issue, we're not exactly a bank atm
Yeah. It kinda got mixed in there, I originally meant to post it as a suggestion to the signature thread.
#7 Whether or not there's a logo on every page is a style issue, it clearly doesn't need to be in the markup.
I'll have to disagree with you there, I still feel that it's kind of a hack to implement a logo currently. Also, I have grown quite accustomed to be able to click on the logo to visit the home page. Meh, it's preference I guess!

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exp
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Post by exp » Sat Mar 03, 2007 9:07 am

well, I think I pretty much agree with rar here.

1. Kinda hard to do. And one big reason against this is future maintenance effort required. I've grown quite annoyed with all the phpbb feature backporting required on each security update once you start to extend your version with custom extensions. We also had added some custom features to our backtracker in the beginning. But as no one was around to maintain them, they got removed again.
I do see the clear benefits of integration, community wise, though. Another issue would be availability. It's a quite useful property of the current solution that forum and bug tracker will still be fully useable even if the main anidb servers are down for some reason.

2. Yeah, this is mainly about bandwidth use and server load.
Is there any way to restrict common robots to a specific url with something similar to regular expressions? i.e. to:
http://anidb.info/perl-bin/animedb.pl?show=anime&aid=\d+

3. Well, we could add a special url shorthand which directly forwards you to anidb's anime search. If you then use a full title (i.e. short title) of an anime in that url, you would be redirected to it. i.e.
http://anidb.info/s/gits
however, any such links would of course break if the corresponding title of the anime is changed. that is why references by AID are generally the better idea.

6. Again I also don't quite see phishing issues as a real concern for anidb. The current page has lots of XSS problems anyway. So with enough effort you could probably get your hands on session cookies right now already.
Something like this would actually be required if we really want to link the forum, bugtracker, ... to the main site. As they're running on different servers.
About the sig server... oh well, we're probably going to see lots of other changes before anything is done on that front :P
As for features? Geez! I'm still discovering new features everyday, you know.
hrhr, well one of the things on our TODO list is something like a feature awareness week. Were we introduce all the not-so-well-known features of AniDB. (even AniDB mods don't know all features)

Btw. any comments on the data we should collect/display on the planned "user page"?

BYe!
EXP

Charles
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Post by Charles » Sat Mar 03, 2007 1:19 pm

2. Yeah, this is mainly about bandwidth use and server load.
Is there any way to restrict common robots to a specific url with something similar to regular expressions? i.e. to:
http://anidb.info/perl-bin/animedb.pl?show=anime&aid=\d
IIRC you can only use a wildcard, which sucks.
Btw. any comments on the data we should collect/display on the planned "user page"?
No idea!

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Elias
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Post by Elias » Sat Mar 03, 2007 11:05 pm

exp wrote: Is there any way to restrict common robots to a specific url with something similar to regular expressions? i.e. to:
http://anidb.info/perl-bin/animedb.pl?show=anime&aid=\d+
Standard robots.txt does not allows using regular expressions, but this can be done using robots meta tag in html pages, like adding:
<meta name="robots" content="index,nofollow">
in generated pages matching
http://anidb.info/perl-bin/animedb.pl?show=anime&aid=\d+
and
<meta name="robots" content="noindex,nofollow">
in all others.

But on the other hand common robots generally prefers links without parameteres in url so it would be better to allow indexing only some from short links (disallowing all other)
http://anidb.info/ad+
http://anidb.info/apd+
...
Just checked - those urls sends 302 in response, why? Wouldn't be better to use internally mod_rewrite keeping those short urls in browsers?

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exp
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Post by exp » Sun Mar 04, 2007 8:09 am

Elias wrote:Just checked - those urls sends 302 in response, why? Wouldn't be better to use internally mod_rewrite keeping those short urls in browsers?
legacy issue. keeping short urls is likely to break internal links.
we might fix that some day, but right now we have to switch to long urls for everything to work correctly.

BYe!
EXP

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nwa
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Post by nwa » Sun Mar 04, 2007 2:44 pm

EXP wrote:most likely included:
- gender
- free text

random ideas (never mind potential silliness, this is meant to start a discussion):
- age/birthday
- nationality
- location (free text)
- username on forum/wiki/tracker/irc
- first anime seen
- watching anime since
- genre/category preferences (free text or dropdown selection) (might be usefull data for anime hint too) (maybe with weights, also negative listings, i.e. "dislikes genre horror")
- url?
- pic? (maybe only for adv. users)
- public email, icq/jabber/aim/yahoo/msn/...
- extra top5 anime selection (not related to anime votes, top5 for most users would be unsorted based on anime votes, very few users use fine grained votes)
- top5 manga selection
- top5 anime characters? (maybe available via votes in chardb someday)
- top5 seiyus? (same as above)
- top5 OST/song? (maybe available via votes in ostdb someday)
- top5 producers?
for the love of god, NOOOOOOOOO~~!

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fahrenheit
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Post by fahrenheit » Tue Mar 13, 2007 10:04 pm

if we are talking about user community features i think we should try something like last.fm, in terms of goal anidb and last.fm are similar one focus on specific files (of an anime) and the other on musics (of an album/group/genre).

and ignoring the posting/shoutbox and general user comentary stuff it could all be implemented or is currently kindof implemented.

Example, when you go see the page of a given user there's an indicator of that user compatibility with oneself, kinda like the current anidb recomendation system.

So in general anidb allready offers much community oriented stuff, but lacks the polish.

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exp
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Post by exp » Sun Mar 18, 2007 9:13 pm

first version of the user page is now online.

anidb -> myplace -> user page

BYe!
EXP

dArt
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Post by dArt » Mon Mar 19, 2007 12:05 pm

nice features ,

my user page

I would like ability to choose what to display. I don't need Budies, Added, Creq, User level. Or rearange order items are displayed. ONly thing i added TOP 5 is in the bottom.

Choose nationality from drop down list (but that will come later) and display flag.

Ability to show profile for quests (but this limitation is only while testing i think)

Now i know that my age 22,19 :D

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