Friday, April 25, 2008

Search reddit directly from Firefox

Firefox users: thanks to the efforts of the relatively anonymous "Phil", you can search reddit right from the Firefox search bar. Just install the reddit search plugin (go to that page, and click on "reddit" in the search results).

Monday, April 21, 2008

new search!

New search has gone up!

As one of my first tasks as a new employee, I've totally replaced the reddit search function. (Just in time, it seems.). New index, new search library, all new articles! Okay, I can't take credit for the new articles. That's all you.

The new search code is tuned with the assumption that there is one article that you are looking for when you search. It also assumes that that article was relatively recent, and got enough points that you were likely to see it. So it's tuned to find that one result for you. It's not that great for browsing by keyword (run a search for "vote up if" and you'll see that you won't get all of the posts with that term on the first page of results), but it should be great for, you know, searching.

Oh, and you can now search for C++. You're welcome, C++ programmers that have been complaining about that :)

Some tips:

  • The URL is included in the searched fields. If you know that article was posted to a blogspot domain, put "blogspot" in the search field example

  • is the reddit. If you put "politics" in the search field, it will weight articles from that reddit. example

  • is the username that posted it example

  • The + and - operators are supported, as well as the AND and OR modifiers example

  • The more keywords, the better. By far. Stemming is done, so you can approximate within reason (see the first few results of this search and compare to the search terms)

  • Quotes help, too example

  • If you know it was relatively recent, try limiting the time-period with the "links from" on the side-bar example

  • You can search for reddits. That's actually been there for a while, but I'd like to believe that the results are better now

If it's still not good enough (will it ever be good enough for redditors?), there are some tuneables in there that can be tweaked so that it works the best for the greatest number of users without another re-write (for instance, the weighting for the current reddit, score and newness, whether a search defaults to a weighted OR or an AND, etc). The various tuneables have trade-offs, and it may take some time to get it right, but I'm very confident about the new code. I welcome good-natured feedback. It helps. Really. Maybe my assumptions about recentness and points are broken. Tell me. Send feedback about a search that failed to return what you expected.

Thursday, April 17, 2008

ask Randall Munroe everything you want about romance, sarcasm, math, and language

This is the final "ask" of the three-part askROFLseries. The genius of crowdsourcing proves itself, here are current top-voted questions:

AskCheez: Do your parents know what you do for a living?
AskJeph: Just how goth was Dora? Illuminate us with an illustration?
AskXkcd: [your awesome question here]

We've had a good run thus far with our ROFLpartnership with ROFLCon. There may still be a chance for you to sneak in if you haven't already registered -- doing something called "volunteering" (?). It might be worth asking... err, begging.

If you can't go, the next best thing would be to submit or vote on questions to be asked of these 3 impressive Internet all-stars: Cheez, Jeph Jaques, and Randall Munroe.

You can bet there'll be recordings of all the ROFLevents posted online shortly after the conference (and probably live, too).

welcome, david

David's actually been working here for a little while now (and been a redditor for quite some time).

But creating his reddit alien avatar (and thus bringing him into reddit existence) kept getting trumped on my todo list. When he's not busy crushing us in Starcraft (yes, team reddit and South Korea are the only two places in the world where people still play SC) he's been fixing search and hacking mystery projects in Erlang.

Also, he's not the devil, just a fan of FreeBSD.

Our tiny avatar doesn't do his shield justice. If you'd like the vector version for printing and framing, just email me.

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

tenure tastes like bacon

It's true, just ask newly-tenured Professor Charles of Georgia Tech's College of Computing. His wife sent me a rather unorthodox ad inquiry a little while back -- asking to (surprise) promote her husband on his favorite website.

We were happy to oblige. And we are in fact sending a reddit alien bobblehead his way. You'll have plenty of time to play with it, Charles -- Georgia Tech can't touch you now! We're expecting a lot of pageviews out of you.

Curious about what's the next best thing to do for a loved one besides celebrating them in ad-space on their favorite website? It's buying them merchandise from said site!

Wednesday, April 09, 2008

Bon jour, cześć wszystkim, and G'day mate, as the case may be

Though the continued dedication of our wonderfully dedicated users, we're pleased to announce reddit now comes in French (thanks to philefou), Polish (thanks to alsaad and harnir), and most difficult of all, Australian (via dirtysnachez's tweakings).

Don't see your favorite language? Volunteer to help.

Friday, April 04, 2008

like questionable content? ask jeph jaques some questions about it

You may remember last week's Q&A session with "Cheez" (not his real name) of I Can Has Cheezburger?. The result was a pretty diverse set of questions (it's not too late to vote & submit).

This week, we've got Jeph Jaques of the insanely popular webcomic, Questionable Content. Submit a question using the novel reddit "self" post and put the question in the title field. Jeph will be answering the best questions during ROFLCon this April in Cambridge, MA.

Tuesday, April 01, 2008

put those dollars into something safe, like reddit karma!

Since the beginning of reddit, the second most popular question we've received is "what is karma good for?" (the most popular being "so what exactly does Alexis do?"). Until now we haven't had a solid answer. Sometimes we say it encourages people to submit links as though reddit were some sort of video game. Sometimes we say Paul Graham insisted we do it. However, today we are happy to announce an exciting new value to reddit karma: the US Dollar!

Starting this afternoon, we will begin selling reddit karma points at the rate of $3/point. Comment karma is $2/point, but we can't guarantee it's actually recorded. Users wishing to sell their karma to other users may do so through us for a 5% commission.

Still, what's the point? You will soon be able to put that karma to good use. You will be able to buy votes on any submission at the rate of 1 vote/karma. Want to change history by making "IMPEACH BUSH" the #1 story? Spend 100 karma and you win. Need to get that Rickroll to the top fast? There's no faster way to lose friends than by spending karma to do so. Naturally down votes are a little pricier at 1 vote / 2 karmas.

A major benefit in the karma-for-votes plan is the improvement in content. No longer will our content be dictated by the irrational votes of regular users, but rather our content will be chosen by those with the most to gain from a popular story. We've struggled to keep up with our friends in the mainstream media who already allow advertisers to dictate their content. Even digg has User/Submitter. We've long felt rather left out.

It's been a long time coming, but we're finally there. Enjoy!