archive improvements

Brett Dikeman brett at
Sun Apr 14 20:05:48 EDT 2002

Many complaints about the archives(mostly searching) have not gone
unnoticed, and I started in December with some friends on a project
to make scripts to import mbox files into an database, along with
some stuff to search it in meaningful ways.

The user interface is complete enough to list messages in very simple
form and to display a particular requested email.  If you'd like to
see this in action, go to:

At the moment, it shows all messages from the date supplies to
current.  We started out using the A8 mailing list mbox archive
because it was reasonably small.

This represents the first semi-successful import of messages into the
database, but still somewhat incomplete; both the UI and the backend
data import don't even deal with issues like threading, and there's
no code to associate messages with a particular list(since we have
almost a dozen, I think...that's pretty important :-)  There's also
all the usual prev/next buttons missing, I need to add a search page,
etc. etc.

We're also going to be adding MIME parsing, because MLDB(as we're
calling it) is intended for a wider audience besides just Audifans.
Being able to handle attachments properly is very important for, say,
a mailing list of software developers emailing files back+forth.

Feature suggestions and such are welcome in private, off list.  If
you ever wanted the archives to do something or had a beef with the
way Pipermail/Majordomo archiving worked, now's your chance to say so.

Eventually we'll probably end up making the code publicly available
on something like SourceForge so users can contribute, but for now,
my perspective is that you've got to decide what kind of soup you're
making before you bring in a dozen cooks :-)  We don't even have
comments in the code, documentation to describe how we want to do
things, or a webpage with status and other information.


"They that give up essential liberty to obtain temporary
safety deserve neither liberty nor safety." - Ben Franklin

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