Warning: Possible repeats ahead

I’m going to add a Cites & Insights category soon, partly because Cites & Insights and Walt at Random are becoming more intertwined.

Once I add the category, I’ll go through and assign it to posts that relate fairly directly to the e-journal, except for new-issue announcements (where I can’t imagine why anyone would ever need to go through the old ones, although i will use it for new ones).

I’m not sure how RSS and its ilk recognize newness/updatedness, but I believe it’s at least likely that these posts will show up in Bloglines and other RSS aggregators just because I add the category. If that’s true, my apologies: I’m not trying to get you to read the posts again! If I’m wrong, then no harm is done (other than this pointless post).

Update, 5:45 PST, December 6, 2005: If there have been any repeat messages, this should be the last of them. I’ve finished adding the C&I category to those posts that I think need it (excluding announcements of specific issues). Who knows? I might even have a topical posting one of these days….

2 Responses to “Warning: Possible repeats ahead”

  1. Jon Gorman says:

    Each item (post) has a guid (unique id, usually the url to the post) and a pubDate. I think bloglines and other aggregators check and see if there is an item in the feed with the same guid and same pubDate. If so, it leaves it. If the pubDate has changed, it shows as a “new” entry. I don’t think the catagories actually have an effect on the content of items so you might be ok. If not there might be a way to “supress update” . For some reason I’m having trouble accessing your rss feed directly I can’t verify it.

    (yeah, I know, only a geek would look at the actual RSS feed).

    Jon Gorman

  2. walt says:


    Thanks for the post–and you’re right, as far as I can tell. Updating the text of a post appears to change the pubDate, but changing the categories doesn’t. Apparently, at least, given that only this modified post showed up in my Bloglines, not all of the posts where I added the category.