David McCabe's Summer of Code Blog

I was accepted into Summer of Code 2006 to implement a new discussion system in MediaWiki. This is my story.

Monday, October 01, 2007


At last!

To my surprise, nobody took the initiative to finish Liquid Threads while I was busy with other things. So this summer I had a go at it. It is my great pleasure to announce the first real-world wiki to use Liquid Threads, WikiEducator.

If you want to try Liquid Threads, check out the liquidthreads branch from SVN. (It is kept in sync with the trunk). Then follow the instructions in the file README.liquidthreads. It is still considered beta, so do be careful.

Thank you, Erik Möller, Wikia, COL, and Google.

Monday, August 21, 2006


End of SOC Status Report

Well, today the Google gig is over. Don't worry; I intend to stick with the project at least until LQT is on the English Wikipedia. The status of the project is:

Advice for next year's SOC mentors: Send your students to a conference!

Thursday, August 03, 2006



Here I am at Wikimania! For the first three days, called Hacking Days, we are meeting at the OLPC office. Amazing, amazing place. I am surrounded by famous, brilliant people. The number of wizards here -- not to mention the number of laptops! -- is truly unbelievable. A few months ago I would have envied my present self.

Yesterday we went to SIGGRAPH. More brilliant people and amazing technology. My favorite demo was an interactive, tactile, graphical, digital musical instrument. But there were dozens of amazing demos -- far too many to list them.

Thursday, July 27, 2006


Off to Boston!

I'm busy getting everything ready for Wikimania next week. I'm doing a presentation on LQT August 2nd. So much to do: Implement a couple more features, make sure everything's slick -- no backtraces! -- and prepare the presentation itself. And, on top of that, prepare for travel. Wish me luck!

Brion Vibber told me that we could actually have LQT live on Foundation projects (Wikipedia etc.) by the end of the year! Wheeeeeeee!

Monday, July 03, 2006


Delays. Fun delays, but delays.

Hello, world.

Since we last met, I have made leaps and bounds with Liquid Threads, but there's still a long ways to go in less than two months, and I still don't feel that LQT is ready for public demoing. However I feel about it, though, the server I was going to host a demo on fell through.

Meanwhile, my Linux installation blew up when I tried to upgrade it. My CD-ROM is broken, so I can't readily reinstall it. It's times like these I'm happy to have automatic nightly backups.

Well, I was going to get a Macbook Pro anyways, so I thought I might as well get one now, now that my desktop is out of commission and would take as long to fix as it would take to migrate to a new computer. So, that's what I did. I'm typing on it now, and it's beautiful. Student discounts and rebates are wonderful inventions. Thank you, Apple, for helping me realize how pathetic Linux-on-the-desktop really is.

However, making everything work on it and transfering my files through a cantankerous router has taken a long time. It's frustrating. At the moment, I can't log into the SVN server and I don't know why, so I thought I'd write this update.

Until next time...

Saturday, June 17, 2006



Hi folks! Thanks for your comments on the previous posts. I have been drowning in the end of the school year. I'm a little behind schedule, but I'm back now in full swing, and things are looking up. Almost all the pieces are in place for basic functionality. Demos this week. Now, back to coding!

Friday, May 26, 2006



The day after the announcement, I was pretty much dead to the world. The stress and lack of sleep and excitement prevented me from getting anything done. My family was kind enough to take me out to dinner, though.

The new student mailing list already has over 500 messages in 45 threads, most of it drivel (which, I confess, I helped to instigate).

I'm trying to balance SoC and school (which ends June 15th), so no code yet. Hopefully I'll have something neat for you to look at by Monday. At present I'm working out the database schema and figuring out the best way to integrate the code -- MediaWiki's API is, shall we say, multifaceted.

Suggestions on the URL scheme would be most welcome.


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