ASCII by Jason Scott

Jason Scott's Weblog

Buffing up the BBS Documentary IMDB Entry —

Just worked a little on one of those “in the attic” projects – adding interviewees to the cast list for the BBS Documentary IMDB Entry.

If you’ve never worked with IMDB’s interface for adding or correcting details, it’s very weird to say the least.  And if you’re working in the world of Wikis and think that’s the way everything should be done, then the pace of this system will seem glacial – changes made may not show up for weeks. Normally, though, the whole point of the UI, which is to prevent you from doubling people or missing basic facts, works very well. You want to declare the filming location of a movie, add it, and then wait and your change goes in.

But with BBS Documentary, and the 205 interviewees, adding them in huge bulky groups was really harrowing. I added something like 85 when I first put together the IMDB entry, just a pile of names from the list, and then let it sit. Over time, a lot showed up. I fixed up a few name entries, added trivia, linked to stuff, but then kind of left it. Over the years, I did some minor adjustments, but people who were in it would ask about getting into the list. An IMDB entry’s a big deal, in some cases!

So finally, I added another 100 or so names. The list is much, much more accurate, and they’ve added everyone. And they fixed this minor bug where I typed “Himself” instead of “Herself” for a female interviewee, and it stuck for years. Fixed as well.

I’ll see when I have time to track down the rest. But for now, that cast list is looking pretty huge.  Man, I interviewed a lot of people!

Categorised as: computer history | documentary

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