Retiring Planet Db2 and Planet Big Data

Planet Db2 and Planet Big Data are two blog aggregators that I created when I first started at IBM. They were similar to Planet Debian or Planet Intertwingly but about the Db2 relational database server and about big data technologies like Hadoop. If you are interested in taking over the blogrolls, please contact me.

Blog aggregators are something from an earlier era of the web. We live in a closed off world of walled gardens and information silos like Facebook, Snapchat, and TikTok. In an earlier era, people ran their own blogs independently of any social network. The content was published in a machine-readable format that anyone or anything could pull to get notifications. Anyone could set up the equivalent of the Facebook Wall by using a tool to aggregate — that is, to federate — other people’s feeds.

I still inhabit that lost world to some extent because I use NewsBlur to subscribe to RSS and Atom feeds for news sources like Ars Technica, webcomics like XKCD, and so on. NewsBlur is one of many successors to the late Google Reader. It’s great because I get exactly the content that I have myself curated as something that I care about with none of the noise and none of the ads of Facebook or even Reddit.

The Planets are based on the Planet Venus software created by Sam Ruby. The architecture is that there’s a scheduled cron job that runs at a regular interval to pull updates from all the blogs in the blogroll. It then generates a static site that can be served by any webserver like Apache, Nginx, and so on.

I’m shutting the planets down because the current incarnation is too old to update in place, and I can’t justify spending the time myself to recreate the sites on new technology.

If you are member of the community who’s interested in taking over Planet Db2 or Planet Big Data, please contact me.

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