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Slashcode is dead, long live Slashcode?

Lord Satri (609291) writes | more than 5 years ago

User Journal 3

The good news is Slashdot is still an interesting site to me, continues to evolve and is in active development. But the good news about Slashdot do not apply to Slashcode, Slashdot's open source engine. I'm the main manager of a small Slashcode-based website. Despite my enthusiasm, the truth is Slashcode is dead. It has been dead for quite some time and I wonder if it can be resurrect

The good news is Slashdot is still an interesting site to me, continues to evolve and is in active development. But the good news about Slashdot do not apply to Slashcode, Slashdot's open source engine. I'm the main manager of a small Slashcode-based website. Despite my enthusiasm, the truth is Slashcode is dead. It has been dead for quite some time and I wonder if it can be resurrected. How can Slashcode be dead? There is no community behind it anymore. There has been no official release since 2002, granted you can and should use the CVS tags, but it has not been updated with anything recent such as the AJAX code used on Slashdot for the last few years.

Rebuilding the community? Maybe, but enthusiasts quickly hit a wall. Slashcode's own main page is not up to date, there's a lot of missing information and my previous efforts at helping updating it got no answers from the site admins. How can you build a community when there's no way to learn who's in the boat with you? Ah! The mailing lists, of course! There are two main Slashcode mailing lists. On the Slashcode-general list, there was only 8 threads in 2008, 3 so far for 2009. For the Slashcode-development, it's worse: 2 posts since May 2007, both from our small team. You can ask questions, but you never know if someone will answer the phone.

A few years ago our small team developed a plugin that adds webmaps to stories and GeoRSS to the feed but failed to get much feedback from anyone. We're far from the community and the development workforce than, to name just one, the one behind Drupal, which has its own conference and 2000 developer accounts. Slashdot's responsibility? None directly, Slashcode is open source software, they rightfully have no obligation to contribute to a community.

Slashcode still has some attracting features and an excellent auto-moderation system. So, what's Slashcode future? I'm interested in the insights you have to share. I fear my own Slashsite will die out of technological obsolescence and that other Slashsites have no future. A Slashcode community won't spring out of the digital blue overnight, but it all has to start somewhere. Is it too late to try to build a vibrant Slashcode community?

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I gave up in 2007 (1)

Scott Lockwood (218839) | more than 5 years ago | (#28287185)

I don't do slash hosting anymore at this point.

Slashdot will be dead, too. if they don't fix it (1)

XTaran (70498) | more than 5 years ago | (#28293583)

Hi,

I am, no, I was the last packager of Slashcode for Debian. Slashcode is no more packaged for Debian, since it has two big problems:

It doesn't run with Apache 2.x and Apache 1.3 is no more present in many Linux distributions. That's the main reason why it dropped out of Debian, too. 5 years ago a mod_perl 2.0 patch has been posted on Slashcode.com [slashcode.com] , but it seems as it never got incorporated by Slashcode and Slashcode continued to evolve without Apache 2 compatibility. Two years ago someone submitted a question what's the current state of Slashcode on Apache 2 [slashcode.com] , but this submission seems still pending.

Slashdot.org btw. still runs on Apache 1.3. Probably for the very same reason. They missed that train and I don't want to know what effort it will be today, to move over to Apache 2.0. I expect that even when Slashdot dies, it will die running on a prehistoric Apache 1.3.

The second big problem: There are no official stable releases since many, many years. Only code out of the VCS repository. This also has problems with security fixes. Statements like "all 2.x releases" are affected usually aren't true and you have to check the code yourself if it is affected or not. This drives every distributor crazy.

I don't know how I will proceed with my Slashsite. Probably use the last official stable release 2.2.6 and see if I get it running with Apache 2.2 somehow. Or hope that Slashcode will once run on Apache 2.2 out-of-the-box against all fears. But despite that I'm usually an optimist, I don't expect this to happen.

Wordpress! (1)

ericdano (113424) | more than 5 years ago | (#28337717)

I abandoned Slashcode in favor of Wordpress. It was fairly easy to migrate all the users, articles, and comments over. It would be even easier now that Wordpress has threaded comments.

The big pain was the attachments. Slashcode was using BLOBS, which was a great idea. Wordpress doesn't do that. So, all the images and files I had as Blobs I had to dig out. That was a pain.

However, once I got everything into Wordpress I haven't regretted it at all. Wordpress runs Apache 2.2 no problem. And its development community is alive and vibrant.

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