In a way, we’re all related

I have a huge list of things I’d like to have on my personal site but can rarely find the time or energy to implement many of them. Recently though I was able to scrape together enough of both to add two very subtle things that I’ve wanted to see on the site for a very long time.

The first is “related posts”. There are countless related posts plugins out there and all of them work fairly well but since I already use the Ultimate Tag Warrior plugin for my tagging efforts, and it has a function for related posts, I’m using a slightly tweaked version of that. When WordPress 2.3 is released, and tags are included by default along with a way to import all of my UTW tags, I may need to adjust the way I handle related posts. Until then, these seem to work well enough.

The second was I’ve always wanted to utilized my Ma.gnolia bookmarks better. Bookmarks seem to come and go and rarely are they ever used as a really valueable resource. I think the way I am using them now will add a lot of value to bookmarks that I’ve stored on Ma.gnolia, even if I had saved them there a very long time ago*. What’s more is that I’m adding value to my posts too!

The way I am using my bookmarks is through “related links” which can be found just to the right of the related posts on the bottom of every post on my site. I’m using Ma.gnolia’s API to search my Ma.gnolia account for bookmarks tagged with the same tags as the current post and constructing a list of the latest five of those. I’ll be working on extending this somehow to show every applicable bookmark but I’ve found that five should provide enough of a resource in most cases.

So come to the site, take a look, and let me know what you think. I’ll be releasing this new “Ma.gnolia Related” plugin after I’ve let it run on my site for a little while and I’m able to clean up the code a little. Oh, and it uses an as yet unreleased method argument of Ma.gnolia’s API – so I may need to wait until the next version of their API is officially released. (And to those that will probably wonder, yes I’m caching requests. Expertly, I may add. :) )