Archive for August, 2008

Foldier Publishing: How and Why

How to publish a foldier

Publishing in foldier is easy. Open the smart folder you want to publish (you will be in the My Items page), click on the ‘Folder’ menu button and hit Publish.

Publishing a smart folder from the 'folder' menu

Publishing a smart folder from the 'folder' menu

A this point foldier will open the Publishing Box and ask you three things:

1 – How many items you want to be visible to the outside

Publishing a smart folder generates a public page, a RSS feed and the ability to embed the folder as a widget within any HTML pages, blogs, social networks etc. You need to tell foldier how many articles will be broadcast at any given time. A number between 10 and 20 is the norm.

2 – If you want to publish all the items currently in the folder

This option will change the permissions to everything inside the current folder to Public. Only public items are visible through public folders to the outside.
If you already have some selected items marked as public and do not want everything else in the folder to be published then uncheck this option.

3 – Few words to describe your published folder

This is important because the description will appear on the top of the public page. So write something meaningful introducing your audience to the content of the page.

See here an example »

Why publishing a foldier?

You may want to publish a folder for all sort of reasons. Here I have a few for you (in random order):

  • Because you are an expert on a given subject and want to expose what is best (or worst) out there
  • Because you want to keep your friends informed and up to date on something you care
  • Because you want to show support to a cause
  • Because you are too lazy to write a blog and post everyday. It is just easier to publish who you agree with.
  • Because is fun
  • Because it aggregates news and web pages that are not available as RSS feeds
  • Because you are conspiracy theorist and want to create a feed with all the evidence of your case!
  • Because you want to show in your blog a list of articles relevant to your posts and want the list to be dynamic and changing…

And this list can go on …

We gather traffic statistics on all the published folders and the ‘Most Popular‘ section is updated every day. We look forward to see your editorial capabilities in action!

I will post next a few tips on how to setup within a foldier account a quick publishing system you can update everyday with just a few clicks of the mouse.

Michele Ursino


The Interoperable Internet

In a recent post Tim O’Reilly writes about an incumbent problem that the open source movement may encounter in a near future: the rise of cloud computing may create a new, proprietary lock-in where users are trapped by services holding their data rather than software installed on their machines.

I can see this problem very well. I think about it every time I hear this nonsense talk about some new sites becoming new platforms for the Internet. New and well established companies play this game: Google, Facebook, Salesforce, Microsoft and all the WebOS startups out there.  Their game is to reproduce – in some form or shape – what Microsoft has brilliantly done with Windows and the PC, and Apple with MAC OS.

Most people (but not Tim O’Reilly) do not see that the platform is already there! It’s called the Internet, or – as Tim writes it – The Interoperable Internet.

Take note: All of the platform as a service plays, from Amazon’s S3 and EC2 and Google’s AppEngine to Salesforce’s — not to mention Facebook’s social networking platform — have a lot more in common with AOL than they do with internet services as we’ve known them over the past decade and a half. Will we have to spend a decade backtracking from centralized approaches? The interoperable internet should be the platform, not any one vendor’s private preserve.” (Tim O’Reilly)

We could not agree more!

And don’t we all know that the AOL approach was not the right one? Don’t we all want a rich open platform where small and big applications can freely coexist and “interoperate”, allowing user’s data to move freely from one point to another?

We – here at foldier – believe the Interoperable Internet is the future. A platform no one owns. Where every user owns his or her data regardless of where it is stored. A platform that offers standard protocols application developers can use to connect the dots.

Use foldier a bit and you will quickly recognize that foldier does not hold any of your data, rather it links to it, organizes it and makes it available to you, wherever it may be. Foldier logically organizes your data; it does not change its physical location. Who cares where the data is as long as you can reach it? foldier lets you create your own version of the Internet, the one with the information you care the most; a central place where you can connect the services that make the most sense to you, not just the services provided by the people holding your data.

Keep following us here and on The vision is taking shape.

Michele Ursino


Few weeks ago we introduced the ‘Community’ section. This public part of the foldier web site features the most interesting and popular published foldiers from our users.

A published foldier is not just a public page connected to a user profile, but is also a RSS feed that can be connected to any RSS reader available, and a HTML widget that can be embedded in any public or private web page.

To generate the widget code to embed in a web page you can use the widget editor. Once you published a folder the widget editor is available in the folder menu.

Opening the widget editor for a published folder

Opening the widget editor for a published folder

Once you are in the editor you can adjust various display features, like dimension, style, etc.

Adjusting parameters and customize the appearance

Adjusting parameters and customize the appearance

When you satisfied you can grab the code (copy it in the clipboard) and use it in any page you like.

Getting the code!

Getting the code!

Here is an example of a foldier widget embedded within the social networking home page of BAIA LINK.

BAIA Link using foldier widget

BAIA Link using foldier widget

So enjoy and widgetize your public folders!