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Jeremy Cherfas

You can get good help

1 min read

I managed to fix a long-standing niggle with my practice this afternoon, thanks to some great help from cweiske and others. For the longest time Quill, a micropub client that I can use to publish here, wasn't showing me an option to syndicate directly to Twitter. That meant that I tended reply to tweets and stuff right there in the silo and not bring them back here. Fair enough, especially when a reply without context is like an egg without salt. But we figured it out, in part by that old standby of "switch it off and then switch it back on again". That got things working, and was enough of an impetus to upgrade WithKnown to the latest build. And so far, everything looks good.

Jeremy Cherfas

The worst possible feedback: it works for me.

1 min read

One of the good things about WordPress is how flexible it seems on the surface, able to perform all sorts of wizardry. One of the bad things about WordPress is how that very flexibility often makes it extremely difficult to achieve any sort of wizardry. That seems particularly true of anything to do with the .

So I was surprised to learn that Aaron Davis was having difficulty implementing a ZenPress child theme

Surprised because I run with a ZenPress child theme and cannot recall any difficulties in setting that up. I think there may have been some issues with capitalisation of various names, but beyond that, I'm at a loss. I'd love to help -- but not sure how best to do that.

Maybe I should just share my child theme.

Jeremy Cherfas

About webmentions

2 min read

Webmentions are the glue that sticks all the bits in all the sites together.

That’s my one-liner about one of the core ideas about the , but it doesn’t actually tell you very much if you want to know how the glue works. I’ve kind of absorbed a moderately high-level abstraction over the past little while of playing with webmentions, but a friend asked for more:

Do you know of any diagrams that explain how this stuff works without all the … words that web communities seem to enjoy creating? I keep coming back to this topic every so often, and every time I return things just appear more complicated and broken than before …

I don’t think that last opinion is merited, but then I would say that. And right now I don’t have the time to write up my understanding. I’m pretty sure I saw something clear and to the point a little while back, but I’m blowed if I can find it now. So here are four pieces I have found.

These may not answer the question fully, but they are a start. And they might inspire me to write my own version, especially if I could have a synchronous discussion about it with my interlocuter.

Jeremy Cherfas


2 min read

It is always interesting to read of someone else deciding to give the IndieWeb a try. I like what Michael Singletary has to say, especially this

Most of my online friends and acquaintances will never understand or participate in the IndieWeb, and so I require a bridge between these worlds. On one side I choose what content to post and how it is stored, and it exists mainly on an island that few visit regularly. On the other side is nearly everyone I know, blissfully ignorant of my real home on the web and unable to see any content shared there without manual intervention or working plugins.

What really struck me, though, was the line in his bio: “Blogging since 2002, taking control of my content since 2018.”

I lost some of my pre–2002 posts, not through the actions of any evil silo (were there any, then?), but through my own idiocy in misplacing a crucial backup. And I never really got on board the silo first band-wagon, so in a sense I have always owned the content I care about owning. Most of my friends do consider it kind of weird that I didn’t see the photo they posted only to FB, but they’re only too happy to show them to me one on one. So yes, for now few people visit this island, and that’s OK. I enjoy the ones who do.

I'm using the IndieWeb in an attempt to make it easier for everyone to visit, and that works too.

Jeremy Cherfas

1 min read

For all the joy of the , and the pleasure of civil discourse, I am becoming incredibly confused by aspects of There’s the question of titleless posts, of which is this is one as an experiment, versus status updates. There are posts that appear to be contributions to an interesting conversation but aren’t because they have been cross-posted automatically from elsewhere. And there is the lack of a scroll back, which means that as I follow more people and choose not to check in the middle of my night, stuff vanishes irretrievably from my timeline. 

There are also issues with Known that are nothing to do with

None of this is insurmountable. For me, though, it does add friction. 

Jeremy Cherfas

Horses for courses

1 min read

During the virtual IWC tonight, we were discussing third-party clients for publishing to websites, essentially Micropub clients and MarsEdit. And it occurred to us more or less simultaneously, that I do not use Micropub for the site that supports it out of the box, whereas I do use a client for the site that does not support Micropub out of the box. And that is because the post-creation UI is nice and simple for Known, and a right mess for WordPress.

So, just to be difficult, I'm using Quill for the first time in a long while to create a Post in Known.

Jeremy Cherfas

(Partially) fixing webmention display

1 min read

Rather happy to have scratched a long-standing itch into submission. I use the semantic-linkbacks plugin to display webmentions on one of my WordPress sites. It has an option for displaying webmentions as facepiles, which keeps things neat. But my WordPress theme also displays webmentions as comments, which is mostly redundant. Not entirely, though, because a few webmentions contain actual content, which is not visible in the facepile. I could completely void display of the webmentions, but that loses the little bit of content there.

Fortunately, the latest master of the plugin has settings to display the facepile for  each kind of webmention, so I could stop it making facepiles for actual mentions. Then all I needed to do was hide the theme's display of any webmentions that are just likes or reposts. And that is easily done by adding

.p-like {
	display: none;

.p-repost {
	display: none;

to styles.css.

I'll probably have to revisit that if I ever get any other kinds of webmention, but for now I am content.

Jeremy Cherfas

The ongoing saga of attempting to connect to Known

2 min read

More good help from Manton, cleverdevil and others, but alas no nearer (although I may have eliminated some possibilities).

  1. I was allowing both HTTP and HTTPS. There could have been some kind of mismatch, I suppose, but after editing .htaccess to force SSL, it made no difference to's OS X app.
  2. Then thought that possibly a different endpoint would help (despite the fact that I know all the same details are on the home page). 
  3. Pointed first at /profile and then at /profile/jeremy; still no good.

At this stage, given that Manton managed to get everything working from a clean install of Known out of the box, I think I need to try the same. If that works, well, if nothing else, it works.

I had been fretting about losing data, but if I install into a new sub-domain and it works there, I can always edit the config.ini to point back at the old database. It will be a good opportunity to see how good the instructions are to install at Dreamhost. Last time I managed without any instructions, and I also didn't write up my experiences. This could be an opportunity to pay back.

Jeremy Cherfas

I really want to use and WithKnown, but ...

3 min read

I have never yet been able to post from my to this stream, although the feed from here is reliably picked up there, and reliably pulls replies from there to here. @manton suggested we move my complaints to, but I can see no way of actually engaging with that account. So this afternoon, I decided to attempt to go back to the beginning.

It was a miserable failure.

Here's how it went:

  1. Revoke all current authorisations for
  2. There were four of them, two from yesterday when I last tried.
  3. Launch OS X app
  4. OK!
  5. “If you’re using WordPress or another server, first open the preferences window and enter your web site URL to set it up for posting within the app.”
  6. Roger that. But the old website was still there. Is that going to be a problem?
  7. Start a new post; the old website is there at the bottom. This is going to be a problem.
  8. Same old Same old; Error sending post.
  9. Post does not arrive at
  10. Post does not arrive at WithKnown
  11. WithKnown Error log is empty.
  12. Access log shows no sign of anything from recent attempt to post from
  13. Check to make sure I have up to date app
  14. “ can’t be updated when it’s running from a read-only volume like a disk image or an optical drive.” Move to Applications folder using Finder, relaunch it from there, and try again.
  15. Strange. Check path to
  16. Path is “/Applications/”.
  17. Check the App Store; disappointed but also content that there is not an update.
  18. Delete web site URL from preferences; quit, mostly for superstitious reasons; launch
  19. Very strange; web site URL is still there. Or back? Maybe the app pulls it from
  20. Repeat; same outcome. Superstition justified. Go to my account at
  21. See I have three App tokens. The one for MarsEdit is definitely pointless, as I am not hosted at Remove it.
  22. Throw caution to the winds; remove the tokens for IOS and OS X
  23. OK, IOS now says “Internal Server Error” on attempting to connect. I think I ought to sign out now and then sign back in.
  24. Phew. All is good. And I have a new app token.
  25. On iOS, try to write a new post; insert my Known site; authorise; write a test post. Post it.
  26. “Error sending post”. Tear hair out, as now I do not seem to be able to post to from iOS app.
  27. Go back to 22; remove iOS app token and authorisation token at WithKnown.
  28. Log back in. Can no longer post without adding WithKnown, and posting gives an error, as at 26.
  29. Try again from OS X; same error as at 8.
  30. Post to WithKnown; feed is picked up.

Any and all suggestions gratefully received.

Jeremy Cherfas

Must we copy everything?

1 min read

I dunno. I see this Add a "tweetstorm" UI for chaining status updates with chained POSSE tweets and I think of something I wrote a while back: Or you could write a blog post. Does the really need to make indie copies of everything the silos offer? Even the workarounds?

Maybe I misunderstand, and a feature like this is what weans people off the silo pap. All I know is, I don't think it would work for me.