Friday, May 13 2005
That might be a confusing title for some of you. del.icio.us/bengebre is a list of things that I'm linking to with Del.icio.us, a social bookmarking tool. I actually didn't think it would be that valuable at first but signed up for it anyway to see what it was all about. It's far more useful than I had imagined it would be. I've been using it regularly for months now.
Having become a regular user, I wanted to dynamically update my website here with what I've got over at del.icio.us. There are some Movable Type plugins that export your del.icio.us links to blog posts on a daily basis, but I don't really like that solution. I'm not sure a person's bookmarks should carry the weight of a whole archived entry on a website. If I have enough to say about a site I'll write about it separately. I'd rather having a running list of the last couple of entries I've made so people can see what I'm bookmarking throughout the day.
There's probably a solution out there already that does this, but I thought it would be cool (and educational) to use Ruby to get something going. I didn't realize how easy it was going to be though. I just grab my own del.icio.us RSS feed and use REXML to parse the last 5 entries. Then I output those entries to a file as an unordered HTML list which I can then include on my website here (check the right column).
Unfortunately, my host doesn't provide a recent enough version of Ruby for me to do this on their server, so I set up a cronjob to run it on my local machine occasionally and then I scp the file over to my host with a script. I gotta elegant-ify this solution obviously, but it's a pretty cool quick demonstration if nothing else -- at least until I can get Ruby installed on my host's machines.