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ATS Watcher

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posted on Jun, 17 2005 @ 11:53 AM
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Hi, I had an idea for something that I think would benefit me and possibly some of the other members. But I wanted to check first to see if it had already been done or if it was something that you’d decided against doing for various reasons.

Basically (as the title suggests) it would be a kind of ATS Watcher. An application that you run on your computer that would allow you to monitor ATS threads with out having to have a webpage open.

I see it working like this.

It would allow you to monitor threads, possibly by browsing them from within the application or by dropping the thread URL in to the program.
Once it was monitoring you would be able to get it to notify you on a number of events, including such things as, new posts, a specific number of new post, a new post by a specific member, post with in a certain time frame and so on.

Notifications could come in a number of different forms, emails (maybe if you had it running from home and you were at work unable to get to ats. This could lead to the possibility of being able to reply to a thread via email if you have the application running.), pop windows, alert boxes, if it was an app running from the system tray you could have it show some thing like the XP balloon tips.

I also see the application being able to track people across ATS, poping alerts when they have posted a new thread or replied to a thread.
Also perhaps being able to attach notes to threads, view just the all the links of thread next to who posted them, maybe being able to see percentage wise who has posted to a thread. The application could also pic out any intersite links on the page showing you what thread they came from and a break down of that thread.

Ok there just the ideas for it I have plently more but I could go on all day so I’ll stop there.. Now I’ll go on to the technical side. I can see a few problems that might occur and I’ll cover them as well.

The application it’s self would most likely be written in C# (as it’s something I’ve used before), possibly and open source collaborative project taking input from all the ATS techies out there.

As (obviously) I wouldn’t have access to the databases behind ATS it would have to run by downloading the web pages and analysing the page, breaking it down then storing it in it’s own database. As you monitored more threads the applications database would grow. This would mean you’d be able to view offline any threads that you had monitored also it could reduce the amount of bandwidth ATS uses as people that just wanted to look back over a thread or research something wouldn’t have to connect to ats to view it.

If we wanted to you could have the Application “sharing” info, so one person downloads a load of pages and the app then pushes that to every one else. This could in theory greatly reduce the bandwidth ats uses as people would only have to access the server to post.


Now for the problems (and possibly the reason for not doing it)… If you had a lot of people using an application like this it could (if it didn’t share it’s index or wasn’t run straight out of the backend of ATS) generate a LOT of bandwidth.

Imagine even 50 people all monitoring 20 threads with a refresh time out of 10 seconds. That’s a 1000 website hits every ten second.
Now ATS can and probably has taken a lot worse. But none of them would have been from an application (except maybe google bot or the MSN “website killer” bot) and unlike a human (although judging by some people at ATS I’m not sure if this is true
) an application could do it 24/7

A possible way to get round this would be to limit the number of thread you can monitor. Perhaps using the points system for buying more threads to monitor.

Anyway if some of the “higher ups” would like a proper report on this then I’d be willing to do one. It’s just at the concept stage at the moment but I’m sure I could cobble something together quickly if people were interested.

I’ve run this post through a speller checker numerous times but as that doesn’t always cover it I thought I apologise in advance for the poor spelling and grammar
.

--Burgess.




posted on Jun, 17 2005 @ 12:31 PM
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Very interesting, I might be wanting to know a few more things like:

Who would be setting this up?

Would this include ATS, BTS and PTS?

How would this improve them?

Would ATS watcher be bought with points?



Maybe you've already answered my questions..but it doesn't hurt to repeaat yourself once!



posted on Jun, 17 2005 @ 12:43 PM
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*searches memory*

I believe this came up once before. There is just too much programming and also liability regarding this.

Not to mention, this is a conspiracy site where half the people think the staff is a bunch of Feds. Having them download an app that will run on their machine would be met with skepticism.


Short answer/guess? This idea won't happen. Keep on thinking though.



posted on Jun, 17 2005 @ 12:51 PM
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I like the idea although it does seem like it qould require some amount of programming especially if you get ATS PTS and BTS on there. I don't know how good the e-mail one would be...considering this: Lets say that I am subscribed to even just 1 forum and two people are aruging on it. Then I might get like 30 emails in my inbox. Now I have G-mail so its no problem for space...its just I wouldn't wanted 30 emails from ATS in a row. I do like the idea of the little Windows Ballon in like the bottom right hand corcer like AIM or MSN. But this would only last for a few seconds lets say I am out eating and I come back it won't help me too much. I think a better thing would be like a little box that you can choose to minamize but when its up it shows all of the posts like

ATS: New Processor!:Last Post: 17-6-2005 10:30pm by: The_Final

And just have those indiviually refresh and you could have several although what you could do to save space maybe make it collapaseable (sp) So that all of your ATS things fit into one folder all of your PTS in one folder etc etc..

I dunno just some ideas I figured to throw out at you guys. Great Idea btw Burgess



posted on Jun, 17 2005 @ 02:23 PM
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Originally posted by Burgess
Basically (as the title suggests) it would be a kind of ATS Watcher. An application that you run on your computer that would allow you to monitor ATS threads with out having to have a webpage open.

We have it, its the RSS feeds.



posted on Jun, 17 2005 @ 02:33 PM
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I use this one below it’s easy to use and best of all it’s free

Rss Reader




how to set up an Rss reader

[edit on 17/6/2005 by Sauron]



posted on Jun, 17 2005 @ 03:18 PM
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Originally posted by ZeddicusZulZorander
I believe this came up once before. There is just too much programming and also liability regarding this.


Granted it would probably require a lot of programming, but i'm offering to do it
ATS could have as little or as much control as they wanted.


Not to mention, this is a conspiracy site where half the people think the staff is a bunch of Feds. Having them download an app that will run on their machine would be met with skepticism.


Perhaps, but if it was only optional and the source code was available for people to view i don’t think it would be a problem.



This idea won't happen.


Is that because you don’t think it’s technically feasible or because ATS will say no?

I'm not saying i'm going to be making this thing tomorrow, it's going to take considerable time and effort. But i'm quite willing to put it in. I spend a lot of time on ATS, not necessarily posting but just reading and learning.
I also spend a lot of time designing and building web apps (for my job) and thought this would be the perfect way to kind of mesh the two and allow me to learn something new. It would allow me to enhance my ATS experience as well as (maybe) enhancing other peoples experiences.

At the end of the day (i hate that expression) if it's decided its a no go then i'll drop it



posted on Jun, 17 2005 @ 03:21 PM
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Try using the "My ATS" button...

It's remarkably similar, I believe.....



posted on Jun, 17 2005 @ 04:00 PM
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Originally posted by Gazrok
Try using the "My ATS" button...

It's remarkably similar, I believe.....


I do use it


But it isn't able to do everything i want it to do. I'm not saying it's not good i love ATS i think they have done a fantastic job building and running a site this size. It's easily got one of the best interfaces about, it's easy to use, has a massive community behind it and more importantly it listens to it!
That’s why i feel like i could give something back to it.

Oh well, maybe it's just not meant to be



posted on Jun, 20 2005 @ 10:53 AM
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Guess that’s a big fat no then


Probably easier this way.

Thanks for the responses guys.



posted on Jun, 20 2005 @ 11:28 AM
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Burgess,
As Nygdan and Sauron pointed out, there are the RSS feeds--those are great for retrieving the data. It's also a URL that's publicly accessible, and is XML based. Just about any programming environment worth its salt can handle XML in a quasi-friendly manner, and C# does a pretty good job of it (using C# and XML myself right now on a couple of projects.) You probably wouldn't be getting all of the data you'd like to have, but that's just the nature of the beast.

If you're wanting to pursue some kind of utility that uses the RSS feeds--and the staff here have no problem with it--I'd be more than willing to offer my assistance. I'm not the greatest C# coder in the world, but I know a little bit of what to do. Shoot me a U2U and we can discuss it if you'd like (and again, if there's no problems from the staff.)



posted on Jun, 20 2005 @ 11:52 AM
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This concept meshes well with our long-term plan for the XML feeds. Soon, each individual thread will have an RSS feed that links to the most recent post.

I'd much rather keep to open standards and existing systems, than create someone only members on a certain platform could utilize.



posted on Jun, 20 2005 @ 12:01 PM
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Originally posted by SkepticOverlord
I'd much rather keep to open standards and existing systems, than create someone only members on a certain platform could utilize.


Very understandable, and I personally hate platform-specifity (I cut my programming teeth on an old Mac for whatever that's worth). But would you be entirely opposed to members creating an application of their own for member usage? Nobody would be forced to download it, and (if I'm not misunderstanding Burgess' intentions) it wouldn't really do anything that isn't already accomplished here on the site. It would just make it a little easier for members to track things without having to keep a browser window open, and a basic app could be done entirely off of the RSS feeds. Making it a points-based "subscription" would need to work with the backend of course, but other than that it's just a specialized RSS reader. Again, that's if I'm understanding Burgess' concept well enough, and I don't want to "steal the spotlight" from him/her either.

EDIT:
I'd forgotten about this. Regarding the platform, .NET wouldn't necessarily be that limiting. I don't know much about the project, but Mono is an attempt to move .NET (and hence C# for those reading who may not know) off of Windows platforms. From what I remember, I think it was most explicitly for standard Linux/Unix platforms, but it might possibly even be going towards Macs as well. OSX I'm sure would support it given it's Linux base, but I doubt Classic would... Anyways, just thought I'd add that.

[edit on 6/20/2005 by MCory1]



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