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Jeremy Cherfas"/>

A space for mostly short form stuff and responses to things I see elsewhere.

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Jeremy Cherfas

Jeremy Cherfas

Interesting to read Devastatia's IndieWeb Carnival entry, which opens with an account of The Breakfast Club, the day after we saw The Holdovers. We were talking about great high school movies of the past, and of course TBC was among them (also If, The History Boys etc). As a Boomer, I wonder how those and The Holdovers (set in 1971) come across to recent generations.

Jeremy Cherfas

These 40 questions -- in my case direct from Chuck Grimmett -- could make for a satisfying end-of-year exercise and maybe even an IndieWeb carnival topic.





Jeremy Cherfas

Interesting to come across Bryan Lehrer's piece on the same day as Ben Werdmuller's. Personal histories, both focussed on building for the internet, sorta, and both coming, I think, to the same conclusion: money is essential and money spoils everything.

Jeremy Cherfas

Replied to a post on werd.io :

Very interesting personal history from @benwerd ... and here I remain, ready and willing to move from one-off donations to paying a real price for WithKnown.

Jeremy Cherfas

Jeremy Cherfas

Jeremy Cherfas

Nice to see someone else trying to revive blog carnivals in an IndieWeb context. Sara Jakša's first taster appeals on two levels; it is a blog carnival and it is about food. Count me in.

Jeremy Cherfas

Spending time cleaning up my RSS feeds in Newsblur and it isn't easy. I can export the OPML, and work directly on that, but is there a tool that will let me do so easily? Codebeautify's treeview doesn't let me edit the tree. opml.org seems dead. Is there anything else?

Jeremy Cherfas

Jeremy Cherfas

https://ooh.directory/

So that’s what $project was! A new blog directory from Phil Gyford. Reminds me of Halt and Catch Fire s04.

Jeremy Cherfas

Broke out my IndieWeb reader and added some feeds to get going again, thanks to your prompt.

Jeremy Cherfas

@marcelweiss Doesn't seem that extreme to me, perhaps because I have been doing it for quite a few years. But I am no techie, and many modern CMS enable quite a lot of the interaction that IndieWeb promotes.

Jeremy Cherfas

@marcelweiss "the indieweb crowd has historically put too much emphasis on this extreme case". What is the extreme case you are referring to, please?

Jeremy Cherfas

@person72443 @omgitswinx Or, you know, come on over and explore https://indieweb.org/ direct and join the chat. We're quite friendly ...

Jeremy Cherfas

@bonjouryannick You might want to look at https://indieweb.org/Micropub which has a few examples, libraries etc that you can modify or, depending on your system, adopt directly.

Jeremy Cherfas

Replied to a post on appdot.net :

To my knowledge this is the first time I've been mentioned over at Mastodon, so it seems only right and proper to see whether the wonders of IndieWeb allow me to reply there. Good to see old online friends but not sure I can handle another channel.

Jeremy Cherfas

As I continue reading and sometimes re-posting things written on this day, I've decided to do one more thing at the end of a session: go to a random site in the IndieWeb WebRing. Today, I found something that resonates down the years: how to organise the content of a weblog.

Jeremy Cherfas

Today is the five year anniversary of installing WithKnown here. We’ve had our ups and downs, and it has been generally positive. Not sure about the future though, I must be honest.

Jeremy Cherfas

@C2ooth Interesting post, and much of what you are looking for already exists within the IndieWeb community. HTTPS://indieweb.org as you perhaps know. Moreover, we are not all disenchanted tech utopians

Jeremy Cherfas

@mer_matthews You can get turnkey Indieweb at micro.blog for $5 a month. The bigger question is, what has payment to do with it? Not everybody who publishes online is looking for payment. Maybe some dislike being sharecroppers for the silos. Not the same as wanting to be paid.

Jeremy Cherfas

@mer_matthews I’m not competent to judge everything you have said, but I do know that it certainly does not cost $25 a month to have a site that makes use of IndieWeb principles and building blocks. Do you have specific examples in mind?

Jeremy Cherfas

Revisiting My Ideal Feed Reader – Interdependent Thoughts

Making tentative steps towards implementing an IndieWeb social reader and so reading up what other people have done and how they are using these ideas.

Jeremy Cherfas

Hey @marcoarment Has something changed in Overcast back end? I am getting errors like `file_get_contents(): Failed to enable crypto` from my all data XML file. Maybe part of that root certificate thing, which I confess I do not fully understand.

Jeremy Cherfas

@raymondcamden Are you actually displaying the webmentions anywhere? I looked at your site and couldn't see any, so it is hard to know how to proceed. You might get more help at https://chat.indieweb.org/dev/2021-02-13#bottom

Jeremy Cherfas

@OwenAdamsYT1 If you are talking about the list at https://indieweb.org/site-deaths, it does specifically refer to "content hosting sites" not the individual sites I think you are lamenting. No-one could keep track of all of those, although there is archive.org in a pinch.

Jeremy Cherfas

Jeremy Cherfas

Don't Contribute Anything Relevant in Web Forums Like Reddit

Here's hoping this sensible person soon becomes active in IndieWeb things. 

Jeremy Cherfas

Troubleshooting blues

1 min read

It can be so hard to debug IndieWeb problems when they arise in Known. For now, this should be a webmention of the linked post, because Chris Aldrich reported a problem. But even if this works, I may need to go outside this installation to test properly. Or, perhaps, try webmention.rocks.

Jeremy Cherfas

Jeremy Cherfas

One step closer to PESOS from Instagram

1 min read

I had been barking up the wrong tree, trying to address `photo/edit` in order to create a photo post in WithKnown. Going through my old notes, I figured out how to do it through `micropub/endpoint` instead, which makes a whole lot more sense. Probably I should have started there.

Anyway, I know have the bare bones of being able to post automatically to WithKnown from the RSS feed of my Instagram account. Now I "just" need to build out all the rest; read the RSS feed, extract the relevant bits of data, construct the API request and bung it off.

Which will probably take forever, but hey.

Jeremy Cherfas

PESOS from Instagram?

1 min read

At last night's online HWC we talked a bit about getting pictures in and out of Instagram, now that they have become so much stricter about the API. Getting images into Instagram except through approved apps seems to be getting harder and harder, and is probably impossible by now. Getting images out of Instagram is also not obviously easy. But ...

A new (to me) thing, called Bibliogram, can, under the right conditions, create an RSS or Atom feed from one's profile. I poked around, and the feed contains a link to the image, caption and  date and time. The link to the image works. So maybe ...

I could send the feed to IFTTT or Zapier or similar, and have that create a post via Micropub to my instance of WithKnown. Or even, if I ever get it working, to my main site, which uses Grav.

But I can't even try for a couple of days.

Jeremy Cherfas

Did MySpace Kill the Potential for Customization on Social Media?

Sure, the defaults are elegant, but they are constant reminders that you’re ultimately building castles in someone else’s sandbox, which is sad and unfortunate when you’re trying to build the coolest castle you can.

This is about far more than merely being able to customize the look of your site, although that is clearly important too.

Jeremy Cherfas

@navalang That would be owning your own domain and using building blocks, at least as a start.

Jeremy Cherfas

@isellsoap I know that @chrisaldrich was involved in doing Webmention and other IndieWeb things with his local paper; see https://boffosocko.com/2018/05/29/indieweb-ifying-coloradoboulevard-net/

Jeremy Cherfas

Jeremy Cherfas

An ad-hoc meeting of the WithKnown Open Collective

5 min read

The past 24 hours saw perhaps more activity in the IRC channel (yesterday and today) and than I have ever seen before. Near the end of it all, jgmac1106, having previously voluntold me to be the first rotating organiser, voluntold me to “call all of today a meeting of the Open Collective”. Obviously you can’t have a meeting without minutes,[1] so here they are.

It all started with jgmac1106’s heartfelt plea that he just wanted to publish his site, “not learn backend engineering” and contemplating starting afresh. LewisCowles raised the question of how to reward Open Source software developers and maintainers, and that started a discussion of what it would take to put Known on a commercial footing.

Jgmac1106 was of the opinion that easier install with auto-update was needed. Lewiscowles and jeremycherfas thought that better direction of the project was needed, with a model that offered installation, domain management and updates, for a fee.

“Make it Known would be such a great tagline if we could get Sir Patrick Stewart on board.” Lewiscowles

There followed further discussion of operational models, including micro.blog; pay for hosting, including updates, and some backfeed, with a free offering open to IndieWeb if you have a capable site elsewhere.

On funding, jeremycherfas related his early experience hosting through IndieHosters and jgmac1106 talked about applying for grants to fund specific pieces of Known development. We played around with numbers, concluding that nobody knew enough to build even an outline business plan. There did seem to be agreement that venture capital should be rejected from the outset, while collectives and cooperatives could provide a more desirable structure, and that any kind of structure needs direction.

After a gap, some other people joined the channel and mapkyca explained that right now, a bigger block than money was time as he is working flat out. He also said that the maths does not work out for SaaS.

Benatwork then rejoined the meeting and explained in some depth the history of Known, including funding decisions and his original vision.

The original intention was to build a community platform that could be hosted securely, with discussion not monitored by the likes of a Facebook. … [I]t was never built to be an indieweb platform or an individual blogging engine from the start. The core idea was: flexible, social feeds that one or more people could contribute to, with per-item access control and integrations both in and out. I still believe that it has most value as a multi-user platform.

Major problem: we gave our entire platform away as open source, and it turns out there was a strong correlation between people who wanted to use it and people who didn’t want to pay. Although they were happy to pay for an account on a shared host, which of course didn’t go to us. So it didn’t really work as a scalable business.

Benatwork then filled us in on recent developments and why his direct involvement has dwindled, all of which is very understandable, closing with his belief that SaaS is not the way forward.

Jgmac1106 then voluntold jeremycherfas to take the lead on setting up monthly meetings for the next three months, as the first rotating organiser.[2] He also shared his idea of having something like Known to offer local media as something they can sell to subscribers as a built in social platform.

In response to a question from Aaron_Klemm, Benatwork shared the Known roadmap on github. He also explained some of the past technical decisions and that maybe some of those should be revisited to improve the product as a whole.

People shared their different ideas of what Known could become for them, with the question of the current admin tax prominent. Cleverdevil said he would be happy to pay mapkyca to update his site, raising again the potential demand for SaaS.

Benatwork’s vision is Known not as a blog CMS exclusively, but rather:

What Known can do is create a stream of many different kinds of content, and present it differently based on context. Filtering is a similarly powerful idea. “Show me all posts that are sensor readings and photos tagged with bats, from January 1st.”

There was some discussion of other aspects of Known that need attention, including the templating engine, which mapkyca said he hopes to separate completely from the back end.

Chrisaldrich raised the possibility of working with Reclaim Hosting to devise a package similar to what Reclaim offers universities, i.e. Reclaim does the heavy lifting for turnkey Known installs while allowing a small group of others to support people who signed up. Aaron_Klemm supported this idea strongly.

There was a lot more discussion of various ways in which Known could contribute to community internet literacy and how it might be used alongside other web publishing tools.

This summary is an entirely personal capture of the discussion; corrections and comments welcome. (You know how to do that, right?) I’ll suggest some times for an online meeting through the channel.


  1. Though apparently you can have one without an agenda.  ↩

  2. Which I will do, bearing in mind that, with exceptions, I am really only available Monday to Friday from 08:00 to 19:00 CEST.  ↩

Jeremy Cherfas

I think it is a splendid idea to revisit indiewebify.me and reorient the expectations around that page. It does suggest that one fiddle with HTML, and that might well be off-putting if one is new to IndieWeb.

Jeremy Cherfas

@StPaulTim Lots of ways to do that, and we are friendly and welcoming. Here are some suggestions https://indieweb.org/discuss and there are lots of online meetings happening too.

Jeremy Cherfas

Replied to a post on dem.cx :

I very much share and understand Amani Mena's frustrations, and often feel the same way myself. That's the problem with plurality, and building blocks, and many things, loosely joined. Too much choice. That's why when I started I went for WithKnown out of the box. Today I might recommend micro.blog. Once you're up and running, and have everything on your domain, you can learn and change systems as you do so. The key is to have everything on your domain.

Jeremy Cherfas

@MGraybosch Fine sentiments, and for a one-page site with a single message, not sharing metadata is an OK choice. But a little markup with microformats on a site helps others to find and enjoy the in their own way.

Jeremy Cherfas

Day 1 of IndieWeb Challenge https://indieweb.org/2019-12-indieweb-challenge.

Fixed all the feeds for my main blog website and checked their validity.

Jeremy Cherfas

Jeremy Cherfas

Good work so far. As you note, micro.blog already offers a lot of the IndieWeb building blocks. And it recently started to offer an option to register your own domain, addressing another of your points. It's a good option for people (who can afford it) to explore the possibilities, and the nice thing is you can always move your content somewhere else if you want to. That's another good reason not to rely on silos.





Jeremy Cherfas

Yes: I just registered for Indie Web Camp Brighton 2019 https://ti.to/adactio/indie-webcamp-brighton-2019

Jeremy Cherfas

@noffle I know absolutely nothing about server admin but I am very happy using bits of indieweb. There is also micro.blog which is even more accessible than WithKnown.

Jeremy Cherfas

It worked! Well done. Are you also in the IndieWeb IRC/Slack?





Jeremy Cherfas

I'm a late adopter on IndieWeb readers, I freely confess. Maybe I should make the effort now. Well, not now, because I'll be out of circulation for a bit, but soon.

Jeremy Cherfas

Seems to me that your home page is great as a professional About page. Just add some markup like an h-card. You have a contact form, which is important, what more do you need?





Jeremy Cherfas

An IndieWeb Book Club is a really interesting idea for people who like that sort of thing, but I am a bit Groucho Marx about clubs. I may get around to the book, or I may not, but right now I will watch from the sidelines.