[Melbourne-pm] Modern Forum software?

Tony Smith ts at meme.com.au
Mon Nov 9 03:38:03 PST 2009

I'd meant to send this to the list but didn't notice that I had only  
replied direct to Tim until later, after which I would have let it  
ride had it not been for an accidental discovery today while some  
local malfunction* was choking my net connection.

It turned out that the TransForum home page was the only web page  
quick enough to load completely during that period. Even a simple  
Google search stalled indefinitely.

*power cycling my ADSL modem and Airport Extreme got rid of the problem.

----- start original message ------

On 08/11/2009, at 8:01 PM, Tim Hogard wrote:

> What are people using for forum software today?

I'm still using my 1998-99 TransForum 1.0 code with only the most  
minor anti-spam and cosmetic enhancements, in a large part because  
I've been waiting for Perl 6 grammars.

> It looks like most of the perl based ones are either 1) fast but  
> have a dated interface or
> 2) are slow but look good.

If you consider deeply indented threads to be a dated interface or  
consider a single comment level which forces commenters to say who  
they are trying to address looks good, then I'd suggest you are asking  
for a religious argument

> I figure slashcode and its friends fit in with 1 and everything2  
> fits in catergory 2.

I'm in awe of what Slashdot has managed of quite recent times, but  
don't see everything2 falling within my definition of a forum.

> Is there something clean, lightweight and modern?
> Also is there anything that doesn't require a SQL database?  If the
> average post is about 500 characters and the minimum size for a
> database is about 20 meg of memory, I figure you need about 40,000
> messages before the database is faster than flat files.

TransForum was/is written to perform well with limited resources and  
totally within the file system, relying on always appending to avoid  
the overwrite problems that broke Matt's forum under heavy load. It  
has its own in-built templating system which means it can look like  
almost anything. (We later turned that part into modules which we  
actively used for client applications for several more years but never  
retrofitted to TransForum itself.)

Right now I have some hopes that Wave is moving in the directions I  
wanted to go but time will tell as to how it is used in practice.

Tony Smith
0405 499 718
TransForum Developer

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