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Linux News Project Proposal

About this Document

This is a work in progress. Discussion of this document is ont he lu-news mailing list.

To subscribe, mail majordomo@linuxunited.org with 'subscribe lu-news' in the message body.

To post, send mail to lu-news@linuxunited.org.

The mailing list archive can be found at http://www.seul.org/archives/lu/news/.

What is the Linux News Project?

The Linux News Project (LNP) provides a network of news server machines that will post and distribute news of interest to the Linux community.

Why LNP?

LNP will provide several advantages:
  • Official Linux News locations make for easy submission.
    Readers can submit to any site in the system and the news will automatically propagate across the entire news network. Individuals and companies new to the Linux community will know exactly how to submit.
  • A single news source for linux
    With an organized news network, all relevant news will be covered, so readers don't need to look around to find the news they want.
  • Reliability
    With a network of news servers, the news service will never be unavailable.
  • Reduced load for moderators
    With more sites participating, each moderator will have less incoming articles to edit and approve.
  • News can easily be pre-sorted and filtered
    Categorization of news articles will facilitate filtering and sorting.
  • End-user sites can customize news for their target audience
    Thanks to categorization, if a client site does not want to display certain types of news, they can easily be ignored.
  • More news
    With more machines ready to receive news, and more moderators that screen, edit and categorize, more news will be available to the readers.
  • More efficient than duplicated effort across several independent news sites.
    News will be in a standard format, allowing it to be more easily shared and organized.

Structure

[NOTE: this is the area that probably needs the most discussion/commenting!]

A set of centralized servers ('masters') comprising the backbone of the system are responsible for storing all of the news. Each master should forward accepted submissions to the other masters. All client sites can then poll these hosts and request news of a certain type. To alleviate the load, certain machines on the backbone might host only one type of news- i.e. software, hardware, etc.

Distribution

News can be distributed using several different methods. These would include html, email, nntp, irc, etc.

Each server will be able to take the news articles and format them however they like, and offer them in whatever medium they like. For instance, some people will want to make them available as a news feed, some will want to make them available as a webpage that is made via perl from the news lists, etc.

This connection can be done through a database access, or maybe even email. The key issue for this will be scalability.

Submissions

Submissions can be either complete articles, or URLs and summaries. Submissions should be made on a web form (or something similar), so that the header fields can come pre-written, making filtering, approving, and maintaining the system simpler. Only 'master' machines will accept submissions. If a client recieves a submission, it should be forwarded to a master.

News Item Structure

Each news article will contain a header describing its contents. Components of this header include:

[begin_header]
[submitter]
[approved]
[title]
[date]
[url]
[category]
[summary]
[end_header]
[begin_body]
[end_body]

Categories

There are different types of categories. I'm not sure whether to make them hierarchical or not... that should be decided once the individual categories are complete.
[a]
software
hardware
companies
miscellaneous


[b]
news
editorial
advertising/commercials
polls
announcements

$Id: news_proposal.html,v 1.5 2009/08/06 07:50:16 arma Exp $