My first attempt for a plugin was to display recent comments. My requirment is very simple, i.e. just display a few (user selectable) comments with links to the post and how long ago that comment was posted. Tinyau has been using a fairly complicated one for his blogs and he introduced that Brian's recent comments plugin to me which Tinyau also ported to Habari. That's far too much for a dummy like me.
I decided to go back to basic. The Habari wiki has a great example to follow. The only addition I did was to add a function to compute the time difference between time() and when the comment was posted to tell 'how long ago'. That function is placed within the CustomTheme class so I just call it like this
where 2nd argument of the timediff function is number of digits, 3rd is for timezone difference and last argument is text to append the output number.