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URL:  http://boards.fool.com/i-am-a-database-consultant-by-profession-and-i-29455878.aspx

Subject:  Re: New Fool Phone App Date:  8/4/2011  2:24 AM
Author:  ptheland Number:  85722 of 89118

I am a database consultant by profession, and I agree that it is largely a database issue. (Full disclosure: to us database types, everything is a database issue.)

Agreed. You database types even try to take things better suited to spreadsheets and word processors and turn them into databases. ;-)

In fact one of my key red flags is anything described as just anything. 8-)

I didn't mean to imply that it was. Perhaps the use of the word "just" is creating problems in communication. Maybe it would be better to say that the boards are "one big, honking, database issue" rather than "just" a database issue.

The threading issue alone is crazy.

I guess that's one I don't really understand. There's a pointer to the previous post in the thread. A one-to-one relationship, as a post can really only be a response to one post (unless it's the first post in a thread). Then there's a pointer to replies to the post. A one-to-many relationship. Any one post can have any number of replies. You could also give each thread a unique ID # to, well, identify what thread it belongs to.

Here at TMF, they use some kind of pointer to the "parent" post - the post to which it replies. That turns into the link in the subject when you're looking at a single post. And they must use some kind of thread ID to display all of the posts in a thread in chronological order. I would guess that the identification of the replies to a post is lacking. Which means that displaying threads in some kind of indented fashion like other boards is difficult.

I've dabbled in a little rudimentary database design for my own use. I find the whole topic fascinating. I guess it appeals to the logical, ordered part of me. But I'm the first to admit that I really don't have a clue about the nuanced complexity of things. Kind of like a kid who's fascinated with addition and subtraction, not realizing the complexity and beauty of calculus.

I really don't want to offend, just (there's that word again) to learn.

--Peter
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