FIRSTr: Like digg, but for robotics

http://firstr.org/images/firstr_cd-promo.jpg](http://firstr.org)

Soo… what is “it”?
It’s a whole new way of viewing FIRST news where you are the boss, combining social bookmarking, blogging, and syndication with a form of non-hierarchical, democratic editorial control. In other words, users choose what content they like, what they want to speak out about, and can promote their own news, all within their own control. While this isn’t a new concept, it’s the only web 2.0 news site for just FIRST information.

What makes this different than, say, CD?
It is a totally different way of finding new stories and promoting things you like. Instead of just telling someone nice job, you can actually help them out by voting for their post. The more votes a story receives, the sooner it will get promoted to the front page. To vote for a post, simply click the orange star. After you have voted the star will turn blue, and you will not be allowed to vote for that same story again. However, this is not intended to attempt to compete directly with CD, it is simply a different way of receiving the news.

Give me an example of what you mean.
Well, let’s say you recently had a team fund raiser where you pied a team captain in the face. While that might not be completely appropriate for CD, the community decides what’s cool and bad on FIRSTr. Assuming they approve, you would receive free exposure of this event, hits on your team website, and possibly more attendees for future events. Speaking of the future, you might decide to take up a collection for more pie-ing next time. It’s a win win situation for everybody.

What now?
Check it out: http://firstr.org. Register if you are in the spirit, and hop right in on submitting and voting on content! RSS feeds are on the bottom right. And most importantly, have fun! It’s not meant to be a strict, serious site, but a innovative, intresting place to get your news. Oh, and if you have any questions, go right ahead and ask them.

Please keep in mind that FIRSTr is in beta, and will probably have a few bugs here or there. Please PM me or post here if you recieve any errors or just don’t like something.

Talk about big font Tim :rolleyes:

Tim had me register a few days ago, the interface is really easy. It’s going to take a lot of effort from a lot of people to get this going as well as it should be, and if it reaches it’s potential it may one day be as useful as CheifDelphi.

When registering don’t put a period in your name, as it messes everything up (shh I had no idea).

Sweet. It seems like if you can keep a user base it could be a very useful tool to post team videos, teasers, etc to.

And not to be a spoil sport but, your use of the logo in the upper right is a logo rules violation. You need the whole nine yards, not just the graphic. :wink:

Cute cute… I approve!

Thank you, and that is the basic principal and hope for future use :slight_smile:

And not to be a spoil sport but, your use of the logo in the upper right is a logo rules violation. You need the whole nine yards, not just the graphic.

Basically, I am pretty sure it’s OK because its not the standard FIRST logo (read below for more details), so the text is not necessary. I would leave in the text and use the standard logo, but that would require a large white box surrounding it that would ruin the theme. While removing the logo would loose a major part of the theme, if I receive a complaint from FIRST I will remove it in a heartbeat.

Specific (boring) deets: The graphic in the corner is a “Decorative graphic element”, not the standard FIRST logo. It adds a “festive air” to the site, and is used in a situation where the standard logo would not be appropriate. Here is a direct quote: “Cropping the graphic elements is encouraged. However, the character of the composed triangle,
circle and square should be maintained,” which the application in which it is used on FIRSTr complies with. Take a look at the Logo Standards Comprehensive guide (page 23) if you would like to read more about the way it is being used.

The site looks real nice and Pligg is a great peice of software. I guess we will just see if enough people use it to make it a good site. It definatly has the potential.

Thank you for the offer, but at the moment all that I’m looking for is users and news. Without that, the site is worth nothing. Perhaps you could spread the word to other FIRSTers you know, such as teammates and friends that don’t check CD? As far as moderation and such, since the majority of the decision making is done by the community, it is more of a server admin sort of management at the moment. If anything comes up though, I’ll be sure to drop you a line :slight_smile:

Agreed, Pligg is awesome. Comes with features I would never want to try and code myself, and keeps things secure with updates. As you said, the main thing is to get users to use it, so I hope that CDers like you hop up on it :D.

Maybe its a bug, but it seems like deleted posts don’t actually get deleted? There are two firstr posts pingbacking the first The Blue Alliance episode, but one of them seems to be only accessible from the pingback link. If I try to digg it, I can’t, because it makes me log in despite clearly displaying that I am logged in.

I don’t know what’s up. Try clicking the links on http://www.thebluealliance.net/2006/12/24/episode-1-frc-electrical-system/ and see if you can figure out what’s going on.

Overall the site looks super slick. Really nice work. Is there any sort of API people can hook into if they want to put top stories on their website?

There are the 3 RSS feeds for published, unpublished and all if thats what you are looking for.

I had a dream like this…you get a cookie.

Very cool site!

I registered for the username “chris”, and it worked for a while last night/early this morning, but it doesn’t work anymore. Any ideas?

Also, I am curious how you implemented the on-hover website screenshots. Is there some sort of a webservice that returns a png or jpg screenshot of the specified website? If so, I’ve been looking for that for a while now. :yikes:

I think its just a PHP script. The site is based off of Pligg. Try downloading Pligg and searching through it to find the specific code that creates the thumbnails.

Wow this is very cool- if you can get the userbase going it could be an AMAZING tool.

Great job! as a hardcore fan of digg.com, i think that this can be successful if we can get the CD User base to start using it.

looks good :smiley:

Looks very professional. I’ll try to use it for this next season. Kudos to getting it live before kickoff. One of the things that has irked me about CD is that it is difficult to get an idea of how important or useful a thread is before I visit it. This isn’t a problem with CD but the BB system in general. Look foward to seeing if enough people use this.

Good job!

It looks amazing, like I said before. Im now starting to think of the practical uses. Obviuosly a site is worthless without content. There was a thread about mods wanting to cut down the number of teasers people post. FIRSTr would be a good place for those. Just an idea.

Great idea. :smiley: