Archive for January, 2018

The Trilema Article Database, a toollet.

Tuesday, January 9th, 2018

In its ten+ years of life, trilema has amassed over 8,000 articles, a feat that has terrorized many, and confounded still more. The sheer number and variety of pieces can make recalling what was said where a bit of a bitch, especially if one can't remember an exact distinguishing phrase.

The Trilema Article Database is a humble attempt to meaningfully, if somewhat idiosyncratically1 index Trilema articles, making them searchable beyond Google's arguably useful options.

I first designed TADB to work as a lisp IRC bot that'd idle in #trilema, but opted to put it up on this site as a php script following two issues: 1. nobody's gonna like a bot capable of (eventually) spitting 8,000+ title/url pairs in channel, and 2. I'm a noob2 and lisp is beardy, how about we not wait forever for the echafaudage of what is, after all, an experimental and possibly even not all that desirable item. Should the thing prove useful I imagine it'll see a lot of surgery.

As of this post solely January of 2017, chosen arbitrarily, has been indexed, to allow potential users to chime in on any modifications3 they'd like to see --obviously, any change to the indexer itself will require a re-indexing of all known articles, which prompted the minimal initial run. Anyone interested in taking on some chunk of pieces, say a month, or a year, or even a category, is welcome to join in --I find it's a great exercise in revisiting old pieces and restructuring them in one's own head, a pleasant reward for the time spent. I'll also make sql dumps of the database available to the lordship for the asking, should anyone want to use it in part or total for Mad Science.

Please give it a spin; TADB lives here.

  1. I see no way out of this; while a number of objective criteria may be extracted from a given article and thereby used to search, an index will contain some interpreted data if it is to be used to match readers' memories to extant articles (that is, unless I'm the only one who doesn't think in terms of "Gee, what was that one piece with 587 words 42% of which started with t?" I guess it's possible. InformAssimilate me! ) []
  2. I listed it as #2 so it's less obvious. That makes it less obvious, right? RIGHT?! []
  3. Additional criteria would be especially appreciated. []