"Count what is countable. Measure what is measureable. What is not measureable, make measureable." -- Galileo

Monday, February 8, 2010

How to ID Plone Sites

The Great Backyard Plone Count kicks off at the cusp of midnight this Friday 12 February, just like its ornithological counterpart, the Great Backyard Bird Count.  The bird watchers have it easy, only dealing with North America and the fact that few birds can be seen by the dark of night.  But Plone sites "fly" 24x7 and Plone watchers are scattered worldwide.  (Darryl Dixon of New Zealand wins the prize for being the first from that timezone to submit a "siting" last year from the easternmost timezone that participated.)

The result is that as Thursday turns to Friday in say Kiritimati, the earliest timezone, it will be midnight Wed-Thurs in Honolulu, 3:00 AM Thursday in Albuquerque, and 10:00 AM Thursday in London.  (Tip o' the hat to The Fixed Time World Clock.)  So we'll open up the online submission form at 3:00 AM MST Thursday 11 February and close it down at 3:00 AM MST Tuesday 15 February.  That way every timezone gets the full window of opportunity, even if it adds 24 hours to the worldwide event.  Plone.org shows visitors from Fiji and New Zealand (Suva and Auckland are +13 UTC), as well as New Caledonia (Noumea is +11 UTC), so we want to give everyone an opportunity to participate fully.

Last week I posted a GBPC Prezi presentation but noted that it was stripped out of Planet Plone and other feeds.  If you care, take a look at http://prezi.com/jahnf2owdk9y/.  Also, while on the subject of Prezi, I created a reusable Prezi for Plone in general, embedded at the end of this post.  Maurizio Delmonte has already translated it into Italian and it looks like Naotaka Hotta is working on a Japanese version. 

Meanwhile, Nate Aune and I have been having a discussion about how one can identify Plone sites.  Of course, the obvious ways are to look for that nice "Plone Powered" colophon and the generator tag (<meta name = "Plone - http://plone.org" >).  Another effective way to ID Plone sites is to tag them in Delicious (thanks again, Sam).  Just make sure that your Plone sites are tagged with the phrase "plone-site" and they'll turn up when we search http://delicious.com/search?p=plone-site.  Right now there are 1932 sites tagged in this manner.  If you haven't tagged your site(s), do so now and next weekend's data mining will sweep them up. 

In untagged sites that are highly customized or have a static front end, we may have to rely on other features for identification.  Lukasz developed Plone data-mining scripts (http://www.llakomy.com/articles/plone-websites-in-uk) for the UK. Builtwith is using a proprietary algorithm and some sort of sampling to track trends in web technologies (they also seem to be missing some obvious high-profile Plone sites, so I'm not too confident in their statistics).  Last year when I discussed this, there was a comment from Andreas Jung via Matt Hamilton that is germane.  They suggest that "/manage_copyright" is a useful method exposed by Zope 2 sites.  I'd love to see what other techniques people can come up with.

Especially for firewalled Plone sites deep behind proxy servers, the only way we'll ever be able to count your contribution is for you as a site developer, user, or owner to self-report.  Whatever way you identify Plone sites, take a moment next weekend to tag them in Delicious (if they're public) and submit new or confirm your previous year's sitings (active links to the tools will be Tweeted and published in this blog starting the 12th).  Get out there and count some birds, too.

1 comment:

Lennart Regebro said...

You can identify almost any plone site by adding /plone to the root url. If you get back something like , it's Plone.

Only sites who actively try to hide that they are Plone sites would fail that test. If you want to foil it, you need to set up a special handling for that URL in your frontend webserver.