Rookmarks – Live RSS Bookmarks


Rookmarks is an application that allows one or more people to administer Firefix-style Live-RSS Bookmarks. It allows one or more editors to control a list of bookmarks that will appear in a subscriber’s browser.

The original application’s audience was the players of Alternate Reality Games, where new sites or new pages on existing sites are uncovered by solving clues. The Rookmarks application itself can be used by anyone who wants to manage RSS bookmarks.

There are a few design ideas and goals behind Rookmarks. These are:

  • Minimal installation requirements. The application runs on PHP with a filesystem-based data repository, as opposed to a MySQL database. This lowers the bar of entry and lets almost anyone set up their own server.
  • It is assumed that there will be a dozen or fewer users. In this case, “users” means “people who administer the system and add bookmarks.” There can be an unlimited number of people who subscribe to the bookmark list (within the limits of your server and bandwidth.) It is also assumed that the editors will be using the system with minimal concurrency.
  • The RSS file itself is a static file that is generated by the Rookmark system. This is to minimize server load. Since the data changes rarely and since a potentially large audience is requesting that data, it makes more sense to have the RSS XML file a static file, rather than code that gets run with each request.
  • There are two user levels: administrator and editor. Administrators can created/delete/modify users and editors can’t. Otherwise, they are both the same. Typically, the site owner is set up as an administrator and will add editors to help maintain bookmarks.
  • Both admin and editor users are generally trustworthy. The subscribing audience at large might not be.


A read-only example has been set up. You can log in as “admin” with the password “password” but you will be unable to actually make changes to the system.


Help Wanted

The application can be spruced up in a few places–for example:

  • Better Web-Two-Point-Oh-iness with a cleaner UI and CSS.
  • The ability for an admin to force-set any user’s password.
  • Better separation of data and code (both are stored in /lib currently.
  • Better documentation and meta-site

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