[yt-dev] What's going on with the Hub

Matthew Turk matthewturk at gmail.com
Wed May 9 12:01:01 PDT 2012

Hi all,

Last August we announced the creation of the yt Hub, at
hub.yt-project.org, to replace the ailing Barn project.  It was
somewhat successful; it received about 30 submissions, which is 30
more than we had before it was announced.  Rick Wagner emailed me
Sunday morning to let me know he'd been able to find a considerable
amount of Spam on the site; while we had put in restrictions keeping
it from going to the front page, or being "published" and sent through
the RSS Feed / email subscription, it was still possible to find them
while searching the site.  Britton spent some time clearing it out,
and it turns out that in total we had 10,000 spam submissions on the
entire site.  I attribute most of the traffic to clever google
searches on the part of spammers -- the strings used on the hub come
from the original software, pligg, which was vulnerable to spam.

Back in March, I received a grant from Amazon in Education to launch a
data pastebin, which has been happily up and running -- although
underused, as it hasn't been announced properly.  Hooks into it have
been inserted into the development branch, will undergo a tad bit of
polish before 2.4, and will be played up in the 2.4 release cycle.
(For instance, PlotCollection objects are already uploadable, along
with projections, and slices.  We have a vertex-display method, but
uploads are not nice yet.)  It's kind of neat, but only time will tell
if this fits a niche for people.  I've slowly been adding on new
stuff, and the next item is going to be "named pastes" -- something
that we've kind of wanted for a while, but never implemented.

Anyway, the convergence of these things has led us to try to implement
project listing in the data hub.  This will be much less accessible to
spammers, as the only upload mechanism will be via API, rather than
web form.  We'll also have substantially more control over the
presentation, methods of interaction, and the entire software stack.
This brings with it some challenges, but I believe we can overcome

As a first step, I've imported all the projects from the old hub, as
well as the users for those projects.  (You can regain access by
resetting your password; your passwords are all set to random values.)
 This first step is here:


but I would like to migrate it to hub.yt-project.org and unify both
offerings.  Project URLs will remain functional, although through
redirects.  Note that the getting started instructions require a
change I implemented in development tip this afternoon.

I'd like to solicit feedback on this:

1) What suggestions do you have for views, style, appearance, etc?
2) What problems do you see as is?
3) What needs to be added?

For what it's worth, I'm working to add editing of submitted projects,
to refine the yt mechanism for submitting new projects (right now it's
non-functional), and to add more documentation about how to use the
hub.  The repo is hosted (publicly) on BitBucket under my account as
yt.hub, so if you want to help out feel free to dive in.

As a word of warning, as I fiddle with things and add new things,
there may be interruptions in service.  Let me know off-list if you
think you see one that's long-lived or broken.



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