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Welcome to the 'Plogging' World 185

Posted by Hemos
from the living-in-a-material-world dept.
Roland Piquepaille writes "No, it's not a typo. A plog is short for 'project log' like a blog is short for 'web log.' And plogs start to be used as tools to manage projects, especially in the IT world, as discovered Michael Schrage of the MIT. He reports his findings in an article published by CIO Magazine, "The Virtues of Chitchat." Schrage found that if plogs are not really commonplace, they're not exactly rare. And they are even used to manage large IT projects, such as ERP rollouts. I totally agree with him that a plog is of great value to integrate people in a team or to keep track of the advancement of a project. And you, what's your view? If you're a project manager, do you use a plog for better control? And if not today, will you use one in the future? This overview contains selected excerpts from Schage's article which will help you to answer the above questions."
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Welcome to the 'Plogging' World

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  • by tcd004 (134130) * on Monday May 17, 2004 @12:03PM (#9174547) Homepage
    See this interesting short piece in FP [foreignpolicy.com] about how military contractors, the Office of Naval Research and Law enforcement agencies are testing plogs on their projects and networks.

    Tcd004
  • by gokubi (413425) on Monday May 17, 2004 @12:04PM (#9174555) Homepage
    I recently started using Basecamp [basecamphq.com] from 37Signals for tracking projects. It's basically a "plogging" system with to-do lists, milestones, file uploading, and one of the most intuitive interfaces I've ever used on the web. I've been tracking internal projects in the way described in the article--I think it's great.

    It also makes it really easy to make client-extranet plogs where clients can comment on your entries. Really slick.
    • by nounderscores (246517) on Monday May 17, 2004 @12:13PM (#9174662)
      hmm have to check that out.
      my uni uses tutos [tutos.org].

      and the software engineering documentation subject has "Document the building of your very own team management software" as their semester project [mu.oz.au]

      actually, in order to manage all the docs our team used a combination of roundup, mailman and B2 blog to make our own rapidly developed team work space...
      it was kinda ironic - using a collaborative online project management system to design a collaborative online project management system

      in the end, though, the strain of having 7 people work on 1 document through a webbased interface got too much so we ended up using CVS on the school unix servers
    • I am also a subscriber. I think the system is great. Area's of imporvement: 1. HTTPS 2. Groups 3. Protected catagories (so you can hide stuff from one group and not the other) I sent the developers a request on each item and recieved a response within 15 - 20 minutes saying that those features were in the works. I upgraded my account to a paid account at that moment due to the fact that they had responded personally to my email quicker than most companies respond with automated responses. I can't say
    • It looks good at first glance (must be the colors :). But no GANTT (or other) charts - just an illustrated calendar view of milestones. How can schedule data be imported to a GANTT chart? They're a brand of "professionalism": clients love them so much that they overlook all kinds of project problems, and complain about good projects when they don't get the charts?
  • by Bobdoer (727516) on Monday May 17, 2004 @12:06PM (#9174573) Homepage Journal
    We already have blogs, flogs, photologs, moblogs and now these plogs? Someone needs to stop making new terms up and just call them all logs.
    • by ericspinder (146776) on Monday May 17, 2004 @12:16PM (#9174697) Journal
      In response to an internal tech newsletter about "what you wanted to see", I anwsered with an idea about an "internal forum" with postings about every project, it's general status, design and questions (and hopefully answers) on technology. Apparently only the name stuck, our "Forum" is an web page form to ask questions, which are to be answered by (appenently) the newsletter staff. In fact, I am only quessing about my idea being turned into an email page becuase I never heard a word back on my suggestion, not even a "hey, thanks" to indicate that it was even read; I suppose other people may have suggested such a "forum" (or even just the general idea).

      I glad the idea has a specific name, now that there is a buzz word attached to the idea maybe someone who matters will pick up on it and champion the idea, it would be useful, no matter what it's called.

    • by sootman (158191) on Monday May 17, 2004 @12:25PM (#9174772) Homepage Journal
      "We already have blogs, flogs, photologs, moblogs and now these plogs? Someone needs to stop making new terms up and just call them all logs."

      There are too many words in English, period. From now on, let's just call all things "things."

      Oh, wait, what's the point of language again?
      • by generic-man (33649) on Monday May 17, 2004 @12:30PM (#9174820) Homepage Journal
        "Blogs," "moblogs," and "plogs" are not words. They are ill-conceived marketing creations, no better than "information superhighway" and "top-speed technology." They exist to perpetuate the myth that personal publishing is going to reinvent the web as a means of communication.

        Weblogs are personal web pages or journals. Plogs are project logs. Photologs are photo journals. Sure, the terms are longer, but they actually sound reasonable compared to "blog."
        • by Angostura (703910) on Monday May 17, 2004 @12:41PM (#9174921)
          Next week, why the neologism 'Web' should be replaced with 'Internet-based hypertext-linked document system'.
        • > "Blogs," "moblogs," and "plogs" are not words. They are ill-conceived marketing creations, no better than "information superhighway" and "top-speed technology." They exist to perpetuate the myth that personal publishing is going to reinvent the web as a means of communication.

          This is ridiculous. Just because they are trendy and some blowhards make some outlandish claims about them, doesn't mean that they aren't concepts or words. In fact, the use of the words "weblog" and "blog" in the popular pres
          • In fact, the use of the words "weblog" and "blog" in the popular press has increased dramatically in the past four years. Standing in the way of contractions just makes you look like a liguistic luddite.

            The problem with "plog" (project log) is that a log of project notes has existed for a long time, and a this "plog" is hard to distinguish the paper version or the client/server version from the web version. So, I think "bplog" for "web project log" (pronounced "buh-plog") should now be accepted as an off

        • While I agree that abbreviated "Internet words" have gone over the top, I do think that personal publishing has had a significant impact on the Web and will continue to do so. It's far easier to get linked to than to get something you say included in, say, the WSJ, so it does distribute the influence of mass media to a far greater degree than has ever happened before.

          Holy cow, I didn't know you were still in Pittsburgh, Jason -- I wondered when I saw your domain name. Cool.
      • by arnie_apesacrappin (200185) on Monday May 17, 2004 @01:21PM (#9175302)
        I believe the word you are looking for is marklar.

        From here [southparkstudios.com] if you don't get the reference.

      • I just hope this doesn't facilitate the return of the Pog.

        Chris
    • Prolog... a Professional Log :-)
    • by sesaetaen (637921) on Monday May 17, 2004 @01:14PM (#9175231)
      web log is to blog, as project log is to:

      1. a) tlog

      2. b) plog
        c) clog

      My logic would tell me a project log was a tlog (+ it sounds way cooler =)
      • d) flog

        as in "to flog the log", i.e. create a work of fiction to fulfill some project manager's dream of what should be happening. Not that I'm cynical or anything... but

        h
  • What a... (Score:2, Funny)

    by skraps (650379)
    shameless plog.
    har, har.
  • Brings back memories, when we would check out each others' .project files... Hopefully this tool will be a little easier to manage.
    • Nostalgia... (Score:4, Interesting)

      by igrp (732252) on Monday May 17, 2004 @12:42PM (#9174932)
      We used to use .project files to keep track of schedule changes, progress and project-related problems we had run into, too. It actually worked very well in small to medium-sized development groups.

      We would timestamp our .project files and each of us would have their login script finger the other group members, compare the timestamp to the one stored in a flat database (ASCII file) and then, if there were any changes, display the output of the finger command.

      Simple, yet effective (plus, it was geeky enough to make sure that nobody outside of R&D or Coding ever bothered to check the status of projects).

      These days, unfortunately, hardly anyone seems to be running fingerd and it's virtually always firewalled off to the outside world.

  • one word (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday May 17, 2004 @12:07PM (#9174585)
    pwiki.
    They make for excellent documentation both for old and for new developers/users
    • Re:one word (Score:3, Insightful)

      by Paulrothrock (685079)
      I think this would be an excellent idea. I'm new to my current organization, and have no way to find out information except for the rather time-consuming process of calling/emailing/asking people. And when I do find something out, I have no way to record it except memory or, if I'm lucky, an email exchange.

      Setting up an organization-wide wikipedia for all issues from how the lunchroom works to how to contact payroll to the business logic for a certain process would provide an invaluable resource. And since

      • Re:one word (Score:5, Informative)

        by gmuslera (3436) on Monday May 17, 2004 @12:48PM (#9174984) Homepage Journal
        I'm using TikiWiki [tikiwiki.org] for projects, it provides me wiki pages, individual blogs for separate projects (and with wiki syntax), basic java drawing program for adding diagrams and collaborate on them, forums, comments and some granularity on permissions (i.e to limit what people can do on one project or another). The tool have a lot of more ways to collaborate, but with those functions are enough for most normal uses.
        • I am not a big fan of Autodesk, but they have something similar to the plog in their Buzzsaw program. It is a combination ftp/blog/email/server. I am an architect. Many large projects use this kind of software because the management is insane. You have a 6 year, $2 billion airport or chemical plant project involving consultants from all over the world, 10 thousand people work on the project and organizing the data becomes a problem.

          With these plog kinds of tools, the situation is much less hierarchic
  • by pavon (30274) on Monday May 17, 2004 @12:07PM (#9174590)
    Richard Stallman's page would be a Freedom Log, one of many in the new flogging scene.
  • SF (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Leffe (686621) on Monday May 17, 2004 @12:08PM (#9174599)
    Could you consider SourceForge [sf.net] a 'plog'?
  • links (Score:5, Informative)

    by thebra (707939) * on Monday May 17, 2004 @12:08PM (#9174602) Homepage Journal
    Palm Plog [dsandler.org], pLog [sourceforge.net]
  • interesting... (Score:2, Interesting)

    by kistral (757265)
    I'm not sure that this site [plogs.net] is working under the same definition of "plog", but then again, I had never heard of a "project log" before this article.
  • Star Trek (Score:5, Funny)

    by danormsby (529805) on Monday May 17, 2004 @12:08PM (#9174604) Homepage
    Why are there all these abbreviations anyway?

    Never heard James T. Kirk put an entry in the clog.

  • by jiffah (685832) on Monday May 17, 2004 @12:08PM (#9174605)
    O.K. it's time to shut off the internet. Thanks for your participation everybody.
  • tlog? (Score:5, Interesting)

    by lacrymology.com (583077) <nospam@minotau[ ... m ['rco' in gap]> on Monday May 17, 2004 @12:08PM (#9174611) Homepage
    If a web log is a blog, then shouldn't project log be a tlog?

    -m
  • Duh! (Score:5, Insightful)

    by imidazole2 (776413) on Monday May 17, 2004 @12:10PM (#9174633) Homepage Journal
    People have been project blogging for a while. So someone comes up with the term PLOG and gets on slashdot? sigh.
    • I was with a company that was doing this back in the early 80s, first with a conferencing program called "Confer" (I think) and then using internal newsgroups. Or was it the other way around? I forget. Anyway, it worked extremely well, both for the management of multiple projects and for bug tracking. As I recall most of the non-technical management team was a bit suspicious of it, however...
  • by mikemacd (84328) on Monday May 17, 2004 @12:11PM (#9174646) Homepage
    I've found that WIKIs [wikipedia.org] can be useful as a collaboration tool in the workplace.

    It can be a free form tool to coordinate various teams and projects. Its important to bear in mind though that even the best tool is no replacement for good management.

    The WIKI I'm currently using is TWIKI [twiki.org] which is GPL'd.
    • It can be a free form tool to coordinate various teams and projects. Its important to bear in mind though that even the best tool is no replacement for good management.

      IMHO, a free-form logging tool or discussion board serves two valuable purposes:

      1) On a free-form weblog or discussion board, it is much easier to be honest about problems. Compare that to formalised documents such as progress reports, where most people tend to play down issues because they think they can fix them themselves before the n

    • Management that actually has a clue would be good, agreed.

      I got sucked into a project that is, in effect (and IMHO :) downgrading our ability to monitor some of the systems we host for other companies. The *only* reason is to bring us in line with the rest of the company. In fact, according to one of the instigators, if we took on board a client who was using absolutely the best monitoring tools ever built, yep, we'd downgrade them too...

      My point? The project manager seems to be a whiz at using MS Projec

    • I second the importance of wikis as project and work management systems. We use one at work and are very happy about it. There's no need to explain something twice, as it's on the wiki. Also, the level of communication in our work group has (slightly) increased. I'm currently sick for a week, stuck at home, not able to get to work. The wiki allows me to stay in contact with the people at work and some of the progress of running projects and technical problems.

      However, we are still in a slow start of our wi
  • by thenextpresident (559469) on Monday May 17, 2004 @12:11PM (#9174647) Homepage Journal
    all make me think of Barf's (John Candy) line in Spaceballs:

    "I'm a mog. Half-man, half-dog. I'm my own best friend."
  • Discussion groups (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Tablizer (95088) on Monday May 17, 2004 @12:13PM (#9174666) Journal
    For small projects, a "Wiki" system is nice because it is informal. It is kind of like a bunch of named note-pads where anyone (given access) can edit content. It has simplified editing conventions to avoid having to type HTML. For example, a bullet point can be created (upon rendering) simply by including an asterisk at the begginning of a paragraph. (Different wikis have different conventions.)

    But for larger groups a more formal "discussion group" may be more appropriate to keep track of who wrote what. These are generally hierarchical, AKA "threaded". The problem many of them have is that it is difficult to reference stuff outside of the hierarchy. They should use some kind of message numbering system so that one can easily make cross-branch references by typing in message numbers.

    However, many managers are not used to such systems and are sometimes intimidated by them. Some tend to be "verbal-oriented".
  • Really now. (Score:2, Insightful)

    by DAldredge (2353)
    Do we really need 42 different names for what is basicly the samething?
    • Everyone wants to say "you know, *I* coined <common English word>". The Internet provides fertile ground for taking this into overdrive.

      Damned if I know why -- it's not as if it's some kind of impressive contribution to mankind or very difficult to coin a word, but...
  • Too many Slashdot stories are coming from other blogs. Quote from original content, please.
    • Since when has Slashdot ever had "original content"? Oh, you want more John Katz?

      Slashdot is just a place to consolidate links to articles posted elsewhere on the web. As more and more *logs are appearing on the net, it only stands to reason that more and more Slashdot stories will be links to a log. I prefer them to the daily NYT article links.
  • by thehive (698558) on Monday May 17, 2004 @12:16PM (#9174696)
    A few months back i setup a blog to help out our team to help manage the knowledge we acquire throughtout the projects duration. My managers fourtunately approved it. Though it was well recieved throught the team, very few knew what a blog actually is and very few have actually used it. It is rather unfortunate that some employees do not do anything other than things which are manadatory. I'm sure people would have used it much more if it was made mandatory to record all their experiences but we know that it's not possible. An oft quoted excuse is time. Blogging does take time and i totally agree with that but what is not being considered is the time that would be saved by someone else who would come across the same problems after a month or two.
  • XP (Score:3, Informative)

    by MikeHunt69 (695265) on Monday May 17, 2004 @12:16PM (#9174701) Journal
    I've worked with Thoughtworks [thoughtworks.com] on a few projects and they looove XP [extremeprogramming.org]. They also love the idea of refactoring and used to keep a project wiki for each project - similar to what is being described here, except without the historical info.
    Martin Fowler, owner of Thoughtworks and XP evangelist, keeps a Bliki [martinfowler.com] (his name for a cross between a Blog & a Wiki)
  • by lpangelrob2 (721920) on Monday May 17, 2004 @12:19PM (#9174724) Journal
    We too also use a Wiki to communicate. Unfortunately a quick glance at the "Recent Changes" page shows the last change was made on February 28th despite three large projects between then and now.

    About the only thing proven here is that when e-mail is shown to be sufficient, it's sufficient, and developers won't be quick to jump to other technologies, even when they are more useful.

    • Wiki success. (Score:3, Interesting)

      by mahlen (6997)

      In contrast, our internal Wiki (a JSPWiki [jspwiki.org] instance) grows by leaps and bounds, currently at the rate of 400 new pages a month, and typically 50+ edits a day. There was never any official pronouncement to make it so; I actually started it here just for myself.

      I think it took off because it was adopted by some high-profile and prolific people, and thus "It's in the Wiki" and "put it in the Wiki" became common phrases. I think that these combined to make it the "official" place to keep vital information. Qui

  • Oh, goody... (Score:2, Insightful)

    by mr_Spook (458791)
    Another buzzword for people to throw about like mad. Just what we need.

    Seriously though, my head may be up my ass on this, but could someone tell me just what the difference between all these *logs and the now long-dead .plan files some used to the same purpose? Sure, you don't have to finger for the info as it's all on the web now, but it's the same concept, isn't it?

    • I think part of the attraction of *logs is that other people can comment on what's written, assuming that's enabled, which it would need to be for a project log. The log is a living document built out of contributions from all the members. That would be tricky to do with a .plan file.
  • I manage the creation and customization of project management and other type of web-based software.

    One of the core features of every program is the 'logging' function -- every time a change is made to a record - whether it be a product, project, customer, or ticket status, it's logged and/or diff'ed, timestamped, and recorded. Logs are available below the main information area. Email messages that are passed through the system's mail relay are also recorded and timestamped, and a user can provide a commen

  • Prior Art (Score:2, Insightful)

    How is this different than tools we've been using for years like Lotus Notes, eRoom, etc.
  • A blog is created for or by a person. A plog is for an event or project.

    Given that most people have more than one project going at a time, and are interested in multiple projects.

    With the spring festivals and such in full swing, I can see where a plog would be terrrific for putting together such a community event.
  • Just export the CVS checkin log and get on with your day!
  • for my corp IT group. Its more wiki-centric but the idea is the same. Its used to help document and communicate.

    I released the first hack on freshmeat a while ago and have been using it in its current ugly form and need to keep refining it, but the ideas are there.
  • by goatbar (661399) on Monday May 17, 2004 @12:30PM (#9174813) Homepage
    Not too surprising. We used this all the time for the MER rovers at JPL. We used aim chat groups with a logging robot (easy enough to write one using say Net::AIM). Lots of design discussions and training sessions were done through IM and then became a part of the project documentation. Then grep and search when you forget something. Just don't say anything too obnoxious while chatting...
  • by broothal (186066) <christian@fabel.dk> on Monday May 17, 2004 @12:39PM (#9174909) Homepage Journal
    I've been looking for something like this for a long time. Unfortunately, plogging doesn't satisfy my every need. So - let me ask the project managers of slashdot (I know you're out there) - what do you use as project collaboration/management tool? Someone posted a link to "Basecamp" which seemed ok (unfortunately it require credit information just to try a free demo). Are there other tools like that? How do they measure up?

    I've been thinking about wiki, but it's a tad to difficult to be useful - my teams usually consists of developers, DB people, graphic designers, customers etc. They'd never learn the simple wiki markup.
    • I've got one that I wrote for my job. It's not too complicated - just keeps some "project master" data (title, description, inception and completion dates), categories, keywords, and project history.

      I can search by keyword (my term for "miscellaneous short free text field"), category/subcategory, "open" projects and the like.

      It's real nice for tracking small projects with small numbers of people working on them - makes for a good "working memory" of what you've done to solve problems in the past. Note

    • Take a look at Trac [edgewall.com], by Edgewall. Trac is a well-done integration of a project wiki, an issue tracker, and a repository viewer, specifically for Subversion [tigris.org]. It works well for me, so I thought I'd plug it a bit.

      Regarding wiki markup, how much markup do you really need? Developers and DBAs shouldn't have an issue learning it, and designers and customers shouldn't need to learn it. They can write plain text without losing much. The point of a wiki is to facilitate communication, not to waste time with ex
    • You don't have to impose the wiki markup on people. WackoWiki has a visual wiki editor [wackowiki.com]. I'm sure there are other wiki engines out there that have a similar functionality, but this shouls solve the problem you're having...
  • by GileadGreene (539584) on Monday May 17, 2004 @12:41PM (#9174925) Homepage
    Blogs or plogs are all well and good, but the problem is that getting anyone to write any kind of documentation is hard. There will always be design decisions that get made but never recorded. Personally, I think that the method of extracting design rationales from an analysis of a project email archive that was proposed in this [u-tokyo.ac.jp] paper would be more useful than a plog, in that it captures the actual consensus and decision-making process, rather than relying on people to go out of their way to write extra information down after the fact. Admittedly, it misses decisions made in verbal interchanges, but it does catch a lot of stuff that would otherwise be missed (I know that many of the projects I've worked on recently have resolved many design issues via email exchanges).

    As an aside: who is Roland Piquepaille, and how does he manage to get an article in /. every other day [slashdot.org]?

  • This sort of thing might invite comments from unqualified people. The classic case is the engineering manager telling a graphic designer how to design a logo. I prefer to read the CVS comments I get in my email from people that are working on the same code as myself. Some people are very good at it, it's very entertaining!
  • We call it "flog".

    Because that's the point where the people who are tired of these silly logs clogging up web searches form up into groups, hunt down the "loggers" and, well, flog them.

    These are the things I amuse myself with while falling asleep at night.
  • after I heard the term mblog

    THIS HAS TO BE STOPPED!!!

    is it REALLY that hard to just say Mobile Log, or Web Log that we need to shorten it?

  • by symbolic (11752) on Monday May 17, 2004 @12:57PM (#9175079)

    There are so many details to track, and so many nuanced changes that can creep into the process. Rather than sit and wonder how in hell things ended up the way they are, and even more importantly, why specific courses of action where chosen over others, a project log is an invaluable tool. This is unfortunately, an area where almost every PIM falters miserably, since they all make the same limited assumptions: every event will have a start/end date, a start/end time, and will involve one or more participants. Project logging requires some very basic information: date, time, summary, category, and a text field that can accommodate a lengthy (up to 32K) description. All fields should be searchable. I will be very happy when I see KOrganizer or any of the other common Linux-based PIMs with this feature.
  • by dmorin (25609) <dmorin@[ ]il.com ['gma' in gap]> on Monday May 17, 2004 @01:19PM (#9175291) Homepage Journal
    Here at work we have two primary ways of communicating, when you don't count chance meetings in the hall. First is a Twiki, second is a developer's mailing list. In putting up a blog I'm hoping to address some of the weaknesses of both:
    • Twiki seems best at spec and document level stuff, but not ongoing conversation. You have to put forth a medium amount of effort to set up a twiki topic properly (i.e. don't just put it up and then email people the link -- LINK TO IT from a main contents page someplace!)
    • Twiki gets out of date way too easily. I started working here and found a page called "Todo Items" for my project. Cool, I read it - it was like 2 years old, I had no clue whether anything was still even relevant.
    • Developer's mailing lists, which are great for conversation, are too easily branched and forgotten. I always see email to "developers" and "cc tom and steve" even though tom and steve are developers. Why? PRobably to get more attention in their inbox. Fine. But inevitably a part of the conversation will then go only to tom and steve when somebody hits the wrong reply button.
    • Another problem with developer lists is that not everybody wants to know everything all the time. We already all get enough email. Plus, what if somebody who is not on the developers list is interested in the topic?
    • Email ends up all over the place. I get my work email at home. Sometimes, for whatever reason, I respond from my home address - and then replies sometimes go there, sometimes to work, depending on how people reply. Or I'm at home and I want to see a particular message that I had already popped on my desktop at work - so now I'm grepping through my workstation's filesystem looking for it. A blog would centralize all that, and provide nice searching functionality.

    My team has a number of large projects going at any time. If everybody project reported it's progress regularly to the "all" mailing list we would quadruple our traffic, and nobody would read anything. So instead I plan to set myself up a blog, tell people that it exists, and maintain it. If people want to read it, super. If they want to get into conversation, even better. I was gonna say "If it flops..." but I dont think it will, because at the very least it'll be a place where I can keep all my own thoughts on things and be my own braindumping ground.

  • by PDHoss (141657) on Monday May 17, 2004 @01:39PM (#9175482)
    4/14: This project sucks. I hate you all.

    4/13: This project sucks. I hate you all.

    4/12: This project sucks. I hate you all.

    4/11: Hot chick from Marketing was at meeting. Woohoo!

    4/10: This project sucks. I hate you all.
  • by rasqual (725451)
    In our case, I wrote a little VB applet that reads an authenticated user's name, formats a header, and so forth. The app simply appends the contents of a file to the newest entry and writes the file out again -- to the share the team uses for other stuff. The file is parked on Active Desktop, and includes a refresh tag in it. Every five minutes the user gets a refresh. This has been wildly popular -- the idea being that a lot of quotidian factoids whose relevance is brief is nevertheless at least very rele
  • nntp (Score:3, Insightful)

    by StrawberryFrog (67065) on Monday May 17, 2004 @01:42PM (#9175528) Homepage Journal
    Oh look. nntp has been reinvented, only without the standardisation.
  • Glog (Score:2, Funny)

    by merphle (744723)
    Slashdot: The one true glog (*log log)
  • ...I've been wanting something like this at the office for a long time now. I'm a project manager, I have ~60 accounts that I am working on simultaneously and with that, it becomes more and more difficult to keep on top of where each project is. If I had something like this where I had all my information and conversation threads under one roof, I'd be sitting pretty. In the end, the one thing that holds up a project -- more than anything else -- is dropped information.

    Time to go write a specification fo
  • These 'logs are an exciting emerging model of social communications. While they're complimentary to traditional email, and (in their structure) often superior, they do conflict with email, especially regarding searching, archiving and crossreferencing. The best 'logs offer in/out gateways with email, at least for referential notices. How would you prefer to keep your fragmenting collection of inboxes from multiplying by a growing system of exclusive 'logs?
  • Anybody else think it's ironic that after thousands of years of human invention whose culmination is a square inch of pure processing power that can process information at speeds approaching the theoretical limits of information at sub-atomic levels, and we 'discover' a 'new' form of communication, wherein we say what's on our minds on a semi-daily basis and keep it in the order in which it was said.

    The narrative is the oldest form of communication, pre-dating written language as the medium of choice for

  • Evan Williams [evhead.com] and his team, of Blogger [blogger.com] fame (bought by Google last year), developed a 'Plogging' app called Pyra back in 2000. Work on it got halted when Blogger started to take off, but I remember trying out a beta version and it rocked. There's a little info still around [theobvious.com] on Pyra, but not much, and people seem to miss it [trajecting.com]; the Pyra.com [pyra.com] site is now just a brochure for their company, which was also called Pyra.

    I guess the market just wasn't ready for this app in 2000. Credit to Williams and his team for the
  • I use wiki with my teams for the same purpose.
  • Blog = Web Log
    Plog = Project Log

    I have a new one:
    Flog = $%&# Log - for all you aspiring mackdaddies out there.
  • It was a good idea back in the 1980s, too, when a team I'd put together was using a private conference on a BBS for project management issues as well. Though we didn't have call it a *log.

    The main difference having the Net makes is that we can log onto local ISPs instead of having to dial up.


  • When I read this article, I was thinking to myself, "Plogging? How quaint. We already do that where I work and we didn't even need a cool catchphrase and Slashdot submission."

    At the small company I work for part-time, our project and task-tracking is done via Bugzilla. Bugzilla, though designed and almost exclusively used for tracking software bugs, turns out to be one heck of an issue tracker. All you need to do is substitute the word "task" for "bug" and everything works grand. My boss enters a "bug" tha
  • Just today I started thinking about using some kind of blog software for something like this at my company.

With all the fancy scientists in the world, why can't they just once build a nuclear balm?

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