Thursday, October 4, 2012

Pleiades Machine Tags for Blog Posts? Yes!

So, a few minutes ago I noticed a new post in my feed reader from a blog I've admired for a while: Javier Andreu Pintado's Oppida Imperii Romani. I've thought for a long time that I ought to get in touch with him (we don't know each other from Adam as far as I know) and see if we could figure out a more-or-less automated way to get his posts to show up on the associated Pleiades pages.

Then it hit me:

Why can't we just use labels incorporating Pleiades IDs like we've been doing with machine tags on Flickr and query the Blogger API to get the associated posts?

Why not indeed. It turns out it just works.

To test, I added the string "pleiades:depicts=579885" as a label on my blog post from last December, "Pleiades, Flickr, and the Ancient World Image Bank" (Since that tag is used in an example in that post. I recognize that the blog post doesn't actually depict that place, which is what that label term ought to mean, but this is just a test).

Then I went to the Google APIs Explorer page for the Blogger "list posts" function (which I found by googling) and entered by blog's ID and the label string in the appropriate fields.

And, in a matter of milliseconds, I got back a JSON representation of my blog post.

So now I'm thinking we might explore the possibility of creating a widget on Pleiades place pages to feature blog posts tagged like this from selected blogs. It appears that, to execute the API queries against Blogger, we have to do them blog-by-blog with known IDs, but that's probably OK anyway so we can curate the process of blog selection and prevent spam.

It occurs to me that the Pelagios community might be interested in looking at this approach in order to build a gateway service to inject blog posts into the Pelagios network.

And while I'm name-checking, I wonder if any Wordpress aficionados out there can come up with a functionally equivalent mechanism.

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