July 18th, 2008

Introducing Karma Medic

If you use Plurk, you know how fun the service is. It's one of the most addictive sites around. But I'm not here to convince you to try it. I'm here to help those who are already there.

Plurk utilizes a point system called Karma. It's a finely tuned system that appeals to those personalities that are competitive or like to collect. I love the reward system associated with karma. I despise the penalty system associated with karma. For example, if you're away from the service for a few days, you lose karma.

If you're already on Plurk, you need Karma Medic. Karma Medic's plurk user name is dblumebuddy. Karma Medic watches out for all her friends. If they're away from the service for too long, Karma Medic administers Karma in their absence.

Finally, you're allowed to leave Plurk and return to it without feeling like you've been unduly punished.

[Edit 07/28/2009] It's been over a year now, and Karma Medic has discontinued her distribution of karma.  She's decided to continue singing, though.  Many thanks to Plurk itself, for making the Karma system less punitive than it was a year ago.


1. Friend (not Follow) dblumebuddy.
2. There is no step 2.

Karma Medic will* accept the friend invitation, and will begin watching out for you in about two hours.

What Happens

Karma Medic is a cron daemon that watches out for her friends every hour. She notices the following sorts of things.

  • If you been plurking, that's great.
  • If you Karma isn't going too far into the negative, that's OK, too.
  • If she's helped you recently, she'll move along.

But, if you haven't been plurking, and your karma's going dangerously low, she'll administer a little karma love in the form of a plurk response.

Also, she likes to sing.

Leaving Karma Medic

There are two ways to leave Karma Medic's services.

  1. Unfriend Karma Medic. Karma Medic will forget everything she ever knew about you within an hour.
  2. Stop plurking. If you leave Plurk by just walking away for a few weeks, Karma Medic notices and stops watching out for you.

The Details

Karma Medic is a completely transparent service. You can see everything she knows. She was written in Python and uses YAML and JSON.

She can only see public plurks.

I intend to release Karma Medic as open source under the MIT license at Google Code. I just need some free time. She uses the Python variant of the Unofficial Plurk API.

*She's only accepting up to 20 35 55 80 111 friends at the moment.  But if any of them leave plurk or unfriend her, she'll accept new friend requests.

So what are you waiting for?  Go friend her!  Help her help you!