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#1 2020-05-22 09:59:04

gaekwad
Admin
From: People's Republic of Cornwall
Registered: 2005-11-19
Posts: 2,884

`lastmod` value in `txp_prefs`

I was peeking at the Textpattern RSS and Atom output, and both feeds use a hard-coded date stamp for the channel-level metadata: 2005-07-23 16:24:10 (or Sat, 23 Jul 2005 14:24:10 GMT if you prefer), which is pulled from the lastmod value in txp_prefs This pre-dates Textpattern 4.0.0, I’m guessing Dean added it in the final stages of development before Textpattern was let loose.

This is finicky on my part, and I mean this with constructive intentions – but that date is largely worthless in any feed as it stands. Can it be improved? How about:

  • set it to a NOW() date stamp when Textpattern is first installed on a given site (for global feeds)
  • set it to a NOW() date stamp when the section/category is created for (for section/category feeds)

Edit: by similar measure, the blog_time_uid field is also set to 2005. Can that be bumped to NOW() with appropriate granularity?

Aside: Textpattern 4 is 15 years old this year. Shall we have cake?

Last edited by gaekwad (2020-05-22 10:06:13)

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#2 2020-05-22 12:12:08

phiw13
Plugin Author
From: Japan
Registered: 2004-02-27
Posts: 1,978
Website

Re: `lastmod` value in `txp_prefs`

What would actually be the benefit of changing it? As far as I can see, the individual article dates are set correctly in the feed(s) and that is what matter to most people. (I think)

Using actual install date (or creation date for section) might make the feed more personalised to one individual TXP install.

Profiling and tracking etc. Just as that always circulating proposal of removing the <generator /> field, I am dubious about the value of such action.

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#3 2020-05-22 16:41:17

gaekwad
Admin
From: People's Republic of Cornwall
Registered: 2005-11-19
Posts: 2,884

Re: `lastmod` value in `txp_prefs`

For me it’s a strong opinion, but weakly held. The 2005 date bears no discernible relevance to anything beyond perhaps (and don’t quote me on this) a date in Textpattern lore where RSS and Atom were added.

Maybe if I knew what the background to that date was, I could better understand why it’s included. Granted, it’s but one aspect of a syndication feed for a CMS that’s a plucky underdog, so the audience benefit is limited. Also, this is certainly not a hill I want to die on!

Within the strictest sense of your question:

What would actually be the benefit of changing it?

To correct an incorrect date that bears no relation to the entity that provides it.

I just checked what a vanilla Wordpress does, they use lastBuildDate in the channel block for RSS which tracks the most recent post edit/update, which makes sense to me.

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