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dfox
27d

Hey everyone,

We have a few pieces of news we're very excited to share with everyone today. Apologies for the long post, but there's a lot to cover!

First, as some of you might have already seen, we just launched the "subscribed" tab in the devRant app on iOS and Android. This feature shows you a feed of the most recent rant posts, likes, and comments from all of the people you subscribe to. This activity feed is updated in real-time (although you have to manually refresh it right now), so you can quickly see the latest activity. Additionally, the feed also shows recommended users (based on your tastes) that you might want to subscribe to. We think both of these aspects of the feed will greatly improve the devRant content discovery experience.

This new feature leads directly into this next announcement. Tim (@trogus) and I just launched a public SaaS API service that powers the features above (and can power many more use-cases across recommendations and activity feeds, with more to come). The service is called Pipeless (https://pipeless.io) and it is currently live (beta), and we encourage everyone to check it out. All feedback is greatly appreciated. It is called Pipeless because it removes the need to create complicated pipelines to power features/algorithms, by instead utilizing the flexibility of graph databases.

Pipeless was born out of the years of experience Tim and I have had working on devRant and from the desire we've seen from the community to have more insight into our technology. One of my favorite (and earliest) devRant memories is from around when we launched, and we instantly had many questions from the community about what tech stack we were using. That interest is what encouraged us to create the "about" page in the app that gives an overview of what technologies we use for devRant.

Since launch, the biggest technology powering devRant has always been our graph database. It's been fun discussing that technology with many of you. Now, we're excited to bring this technology to everyone in the form of a very simple REST API that you can use to quickly build projects that include real-time recommendations and activity feeds. Tim and I are really looking forward to hopefully seeing members of the community make really cool and unique things with the API.

Pipeless has a free plan where you get 75,000 API calls/month and 75,000 items stored. We think this is a solid amount of calls/storage to test out and even build cool projects/features with the API. Additionally, as a thanks for continued support, for devRant++ subscribers who were subscribed before this announcement was posted, we will give some bonus calls/data storage. If you'd like that special bonus, you can just let me know in the comments (as long as your devRant email is the same as Pipeless account email) or feel free to email me (david@hexicallabs.com).

Lastly, and also related, we think Pipeless is going to help us fulfill one of the biggest pieces of feedback we’ve heard from the community. Now, it is going to be our goal to open source the various components of devRant. Although there’s been a few reasons stated in the past for why we haven’t done that, one of the biggest reasons was always the highly proprietary and complicated nature of our backend storage systems. But now, with Pipeless, it will allow us to start moving data there, and then everyone has access to the same system/technology that is powering the devRant backend. The first step for this transition was building the new “subscribed” feed completely on top of Pipeless. We will be following up with more details about this open sourcing effort soon, and we’re very excited for it and we think the community will be too.

Anyway, thank you for reading this and we are really looking forward to everyone’s feedback and seeing what members of the community create with the service. If you’re looking for a very simple way to get started, we have a full sample dataset (1 click to import!) with a tutorial that Tim put together (https://docs.pipeless.io/docs/...) and a full dev portal/documentation (https://docs.pipeless.io).

Let us know if you have any questions and thanks everyone!
- David & Tim (@dfox & @trogus)

Comments
  • 4
    So, it doesn't work in the desktop version, just as donating. But could you at least debounce the "post" buttons?
  • 8
    @Fast-Nop the subscribed feed will come to web soon. Not sure what you mean about post button.
  • 6
    @dfox Hit the comment "post" button twice quickly when posting: The result is a double post like this because the handler doesn't set a "event is already being handled" flag.
  • 1
    Same for rants I think, but I don't want to try that. :)
  • 23
    Wow! congratulations! i hope it will get wildly successful and that big corporations will pay you big bucks! 👍
  • 8
    How does the content recommendation work?

    Is it matching similar rants by the content itself or based on attributes like who posted it, how many ppl you follow that also ++d it?
  • 13
    @donuts good question!

    The specific Pipeless algo being used for the “recommended users” in the subscribed tab is the “recommended users” algo which is this one: https://docs.pipeless.io/docs/...

    For our use-case, it uses recent rants you’ve liked (and tags associated with them), people you’ve followed (and tags associated with content they post), and also collaborative filtering of who people you subscribe to are also commonly subscribed to with.
  • 1
    @dfox did you check with a patent lawyer about those recommendation algos? You don't want to deal with for example Amaz0n in court. 😐
  • 2
    tactical dot
    .
  • 1
    @dfox so I looked at the subscribed section and actually prefer algo better maybe because of the randomness... And bc we rarely add extra tags. And when we do is usually a phrase... or at least for me it is so too sparse.

    The other thing I guess is bc the rant pool is essentially the same and relatively small unlike FB. So a lot of the Subscription posts either already seen in Algo or will see.

    Also for FB I don't use the official client because the news feed recommendations just suck and basically just feel like unwanted content...

    Maybe it's just me tho...
  • 1
    i think it's an interesting choice to put who liked a rant and not whoever posted the rant's username on the subscribed screen. care to elaborate as to why?
  • 2
    Wow! Congrats! :)
  • 9
    @dfox wowwww!!!

    While I just got the gist of Pipeless, I am super happy to know dR is going Open Source and excited to see the transition.

    This place has always been a digital home. This just got better. I hope with Open Source, a lot of issues could be fixed for and by community and new things could be brought in.
  • 3
    @heyheni IBCF algos are Open Source IIRC.

    We recently implemented that one for recommendation system I built at work.

    If not open source, I think we don't have to pay for it. But yes, it was developed by Amazon in 1998 so being careful is better.
  • 1
    That great! Congratulations on launch! I'll definitely find a use case for Pipelines!
  • 0
    dfox, dfox, dfox
  • 1
    Why, if these aren't sweet news for developers of third-party dR clients 👍👍💯 Definitely looking forward for more transparent API gateway (in terms of expectations).
  • 3
    Wow! Great news after a while. Seeing you're very quiet lately, I was sure you guys are building something awesome.
  • 0
  • 1
    And I bet this will take the "Build your own twitter without coding" thing to a new level. :D just kidding
  • 0
    The logout button on pipeless should have an alert box asking if the user is sure to make that action.

    Every logout button should do that.
  • 4
    @dfox Congrats on Pipeless! I read the docs and already started applying it to one of my platforms. Had tested other systems but was waiting for a graph solution so thank you. Will provide more feedback but it was very easy to implement. Thanks!!!
  • 3
    My quick feedback so far:

    * It would be great if we could go to people's profiles from subscribed tab. I subscribed to some of them long ago and now I'm seriously wondering why I did 😅

    * Or we could see and manage who we are subscribed to, like in a list. I can't quite remember now, but I guess this had been discussed before. I don't know if the new design makes this easier to implement or not. But I guess it would be very helpful now that the subscriptions have a more important role.
  • 0
    Why there's "scroll to bottom" option but no "scroll to top" option in post menu.
  • 2
    Awesome, congratulations!
    I'm looking forward to trying Pipeless.
  • 0
    @Fast-Nop I think you mean throttling the post button, right?
  • 0
    @techcatchers No, debouncing. Throttling is limiting the actions per time while debouncing is limiting the action count. Since the desired action count is only a single action, that's debouncing.
  • 0
    @Fast-Nop Debouncing occurs only when an continuous occurring event is over (Depends on max set time pauses) while throttling occurs every time the event is triggered.

    Like, when you stop typing then only the search results are processed reducing the amount of network calls to be made.

    While in case of when you click on post button, the click event has already triggered and now you can block or disable further clicks for a specific time frame so that no further accidental clicks are made.
  • 1
    Sounds awesome!!

    Will definitely try it.
  • 1
    This is so cool. Great way to make graphs approachable and speed up feature releases.
    Good luck with this project!
  • 1
    I'm all for SaaS products that arent made by Amazon, so I'll take a look at this. Thanks, guys!
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