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Human-friendly/readable URLs [message #165427] Fri, 17 June 2011 01:54 Go to next message
dandv is currently offline  dandv   United States
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I've been comparing dozens of forum software packages from forummatrix.org, and keep seeing the same old, antiquated patern over and over:

The URLs look like crap.

In FUDForum's case, "http://fudforum.org/forum/index.php?t=msg&th=6156&start=0&" - what does that tell you? How about http://fudoforum.org/suggestions/joomla-mambo-cms-integration instead?

I read the wiki entry on that, and the best URLs you can get are still completely opaque to the user.

In contrast, high-profile sites like reddit or Slashdot have human-readable URLs:

http://www.reddit.com/r/todayilearned/comments/hnhsv/til_about_seasteading_ the_concept_of_creating

http://yro.slashdot.org/submission/1392280/Emergency-Broadcast-System-Comin g-to-Cell-Phones

The URLs are human-friendly in that they contain the name of the topic. They also have a unique ID in them, which avoids any duplicate title problems (let alone that duplicate topics should be avoided by a feature that automatically searches for threads with a similar title, as uservoice does).

[Updated on: Mon, 27 June 2011 21:03]

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Re: Human-friendly/readable URLs [message #165428 is a reply to message #165427] Fri, 17 June 2011 02:45 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Dayo is currently offline  Dayo   Bahrain
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This sort of thing can be readily done. It just means the server has to run additional database queries to transform the "/suggestions/joomla-mambo-cms-integration" into "/index.php?t=msg&th=6156&start=0&" which is what the PHP actually needs. The existing path-info setup could handle this. These additional calls may, or may not, be welcome.

Alternatively, the program could be set up to auto generate appropriate htaccess files which is a worse idea as it ties things to apache which while being dominant, is not the only game in town.


Frankly, even if the path-info setup couldn't handle it, this is a total red herring and is of absolutely minuscule practical importance within the context of a forum application when you actually think about it.

The only time the "legibility" of the contents of a url may be relevant is when you are posting it as a link somewhere.

In this case I have the following options:

1. Some preceeding context .... Here is a link to a discussion of the joomla-mambo cms integration: hxxp fudforum.org/forum/index.php?t=msg&th=6156&start=0&
2. Some preceeding context .... Here is a link to a discussion of the joomla-mambo cms integration: hxxp fudforum.org/suggestions/joomla-mambo-cms-integration
3. Some preceeding context .... CLICK HERE for a link to a discussion of the joomla-mambo cms integration.

I fail to see where the user would not understand what the url is about in each of the three and there are far more important issues that actually have a real impact to tackle. Perhaps that is why most of the applications you have reviewed persist with this "antiquated" mode.

[Updated on: Fri, 17 June 2011 08:25]

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Re: Human-friendly/readable URLs [message #165460 is a reply to message #165428] Sun, 19 June 2011 23:18 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Ernesto is currently offline  Ernesto   Sweden
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I have solved this issue by using the PATH_INFO style URLs and then just appending the thread title to the URL, just like Slashdot has sovled it (To decrease database lookups, contrary to how reddit has solved it)

So a URL to a thread on my forum looks like this:
http://www.ginnunga.org/forums/t/25347/installed-windows-7-on-an-ssd-/

You can of course go directly to the page like this:
http://www.ginnunga.org/forums/t/25347/

since the final part of the URL doesn't matter, but google etc does not know that, so it works just fine.


How to solve it coding wise is to adjust a few of the rewrites in users.inc.t to understand that the final part of the URL are useless and then just have a function grab the thread/msg title, replace harmful stuff, and then append it to the link with the returned result.


Re: Human-friendly/readable URLs [message #165461 is a reply to message #165460] Mon, 20 June 2011 07:09 Go to previous messageGo to next message
naudefj is currently offline  naudefj   South Africa
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Wow! Can you please post a patch or some instructions?
Re: Human-friendly/readable URLs [message #165625 is a reply to message #165461] Thu, 28 July 2011 07:49 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Atomicrun is currently offline  Atomicrun   Sweden
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Cound the php scan the input URL, and
(A) pass it on if it is in the old format
(B) translate the URL if it is in a human-format.

You then add a button "paste URL of thread" or even "URL of post".
The additional advantage would be that the session-ID is stripped as well on these "external" links.

Re: Human-friendly/readable URLs [message #165636 is a reply to message #165625] Fri, 29 July 2011 04:33 Go to previous messageGo to next message
naudefj is currently offline  naudefj   South Africa
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Looks like Ernesto solved the problem. I would love to see his code, if he doesn't mind, obviously!
Re: Human-friendly/readable URLs [message #165665 is a reply to message #165636] Tue, 02 August 2011 00:38 Go to previous messageGo to next message
James Lewis is currently offline  James Lewis
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Thanks for the post, such a great help for me. Keep them coming mate!
Re: Human-friendly/readable URLs [message #165950 is a reply to message #165460] Thu, 01 September 2011 15:09 Go to previous message
Anik is currently offline  Anik
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Ernesto wrote on Mon, 20 June 2011 08:48
I have solved this issue by using the PATH_INFO style URLs and then just appending the thread title to the URL, just like Slashdot has sovled it (To decrease database lookups, contrary to how reddit has solved it)

So a URL to a thread on my forum looks like this:
http://www.ginnunga.org/forums/t/25347/installed-windows-7-on-an-ssd-/

You can of course go directly to the page like this:
http://www.ginnunga.org/forums/t/25347/

since the final part of the URL doesn't matter, but google etc does not know that, so it works just fine.


How to solve it coding wise is to adjust a few of the rewrites in users.inc.t to understand that the final part of the URL are useless and then just have a function grab the thread/msg title, replace harmful stuff, and then append it to the link with the returned result.


Hi there,..will you tell us the procedure,,
Regards,..
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