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Vogoo set-up advice

Cogmap is starting down the path of introducing collaborative filtering. Soon, very soon, we will start to tell you maps that you might like, based on maps you have looked at or edited in the past!

We are attempting to use Vogoo, which is a Slope One engine perfect for what we are trying to do. Unfortunately, the documentation is a bit weak. Not terrible, but not great either. I wanted to document a few of my questions and some of the things I did for the next lucky guy!


The tutorial tells you how to set ratings, but the installation guide tells you that you should do other things also when you are going to set ratings.  And there are no examples.  Sad face.

I have sat down and tried to implement all of the things they explain at different points and here is what I ended up with (An example, YAY!):

include("<PATH TO VOGOO.PHP>");
$vogoo_check = $vogoo->connected;
{  $rate = $vogoo->automatic_rating($userid,$chartid);
} else { generate_error(0,"Vogoo DB not connecting"); }

Now, I used the automatic rating function because I wanted every logged in view to count as a vote.  Then I use subscribing (which happens automatically on a chart edit), as a “purchase” or indication of love++ for a chart.


It sure sounds like you can’t do both user filtering and item filtering at the same time.  For a site like this – kind of a social network wrapped around an application – that is kind of bleh.  Ideally I want to say here are the kind of maps you like and then also have a “here are users who dig the same maps”.

Despite my bashing of the documentation, when I sent an email with a question, I got a response 24 hours later…. twice!  So that’s pretty good support and I was using the free version.   Of course, he failed to find my bugs, which in retrospect were dumb bugs.  Hmmmmmmmmmm.

Big Conclusion 

So now we are up and gathering data.  My plan is to run it for a month or so and then look at what kind of data set I have.  According to the Vogoo manual, you have to run a separate php program to compute the links between each item, so I assume (although once again the documentation doesn’t discuss it), that I need a fairly good sized sample.  With more than 3,000 maps, I need a little time to develop and expose relationships.  Once I see what the data looks like, I will begin to figure out how to crowd my UI and add that in.

Now, I am not the world’s greatest programmer by any means. In fact, many would testify that I may be the world’s worst. So take all of my advice with a grain of salt, but enjoy!

— brent

12 Responses to “Vogoo set-up advice”

  1. Stephane Says:

    Hi Brent,

    To be honest, the problem with the bug you sent me was that they were depending on your server configuration which, obviously, I couldn’t have access to.

    Anyway, I had very little time to do a proper documentation for Vogoo PHP but all suggestions are welcome. Especially I’d like to know what kind of examples/tutorials you think would be helpful to start with Vogoo.

    By the way, you can use both item-based and user-based collaborative filtering in the same project. The only limitation is that you can’t use both item-based engines at the same time.


  2. Brent Says:

    Like I said, great follow-up support! Surely, with support this hands-on, all problems can be overcome!

  3. Gabe Says:

    How’s implementation of Vogoo going? I’m thinking about using it for my website and was interested if you did end up using it and how it’s working out for you.


  4. brent Says:

    Vogoo is working like a charm. We are gearing up to launch the new stuff and it looks great.

  5. VJ Says:

    Hi, do you think the user-based collaborative filtering from Vogoo would be fast enough to use in my website (1500 users a month) and scalable if my website grows to 10000 users a month? Looks like a great package!

  6. Brent Says:

    Cognap has far more users than either of those numbers and no problems.

  7. Parthi Says:

    Dear Brent,

    can you please advice me how to use vogoo in my website as you said the documentation is not helpful at all

    help would me much appriciated.


    P.S all i want to do is get some rating for documents and recommend that to users as well as recommend similar user to each other.

  8. Brent Says:

    Sounds like vogoo is the product for you, but I am not clear on what you need help with.

  9. Pravin Says:


    trying to use vogoo php lib. But having problems connecting to the database.

    Mysql version on my pc is 5.1.41.

    $vogoo_check is empty or false and hence not connecting to db.
    Is the problem because I am using the root account to connect to mysql?


  10. brent Says:

    Could be, seems unlikely, but I found it was finicky on install.

  11. Pravin Says:

    I finally got it to work. The problem was the way used to specify the path to the vogoo installation directory.

    I had to use something like this under Windows:



    thanks anyways,

  12. Pravin Says:


    I don’t really understand the purpose of the category field in the vogoo database tables. Could you please briefly explain with a small example.