I spent the weekend finishing off the things I wanted to do with the Forum, primarily making an RSS feed for it. I wanted that feed so that I wouldn’t have to constantly check for new messages. Every time I loaded all the feeds I’m monitoring into my RSS Reader, I would see if there were any new messages.
This time I wrote the feed in ASP. Previously I had done it in Delphi. The task was very similar and I really only had to find the equivalent functions in ASP to do what I wanted, and when I got stuck, Google usually helped me come up with the answer quite quickly.
I set up the feed on my own machine so that every time a person adds a new post, the XML file would be updated with the new message. But when I put that up at my website, I got a security error. Unfortunately, the ASP script was not allowed to write to a file in the directory I wanted. So, using an article I earlier found on the web, I converted that program to a self-standing program that would be the feed. Every time someone accessed it, it would go to the Forum database and build the output. Since the output is now being sent to the requester instead of to a file, no security problems occur. The code did not require major changes and works quite well.
Had to then test the feed in various rssreaders. I created a new icon for it, set up author and subject and comments links, and got it and my Behold Blog feed to work in a similar manner.
Then I opened a new forum for Blog Comments and added a big “Comments” image on my Blog page to allow people to go from the Blog and look at or add their own comments into that area of the Forum.
One last glitch to fix: If someone gets from the Behold Blog or from their RSS reader to a specific message in the Forum, and if they are not logged in (meaning they can’t post a message), then the logging in process bumps them out of the message and back to the main Forum page. That’s not good, so I had to fix it so the page you are on doesn’t change when you log in. After all, the reason you are logging in at that time is so that you can reply to that message, so why move from it?
All in all, that was a good weekend’s work! Very satisfied!