Kicks Condor

LEECHING AND LINKING IN THE HYPERTEXT KINGDOM

I FIRST DISCOVERED
THE 【TECHS-MECHS】WHO
ARE A CLAN OF SOUTH
OF THE BORDER GUNDAM
BREAKING DOWN
IMMIGRATION FENCES
WITH THEIR
IMPRESSIVE MANOS
MECANICAS

PLUNDER THE ARCHIVES

This page is also on dat.

MOVING ALONG LET'S SEE MY FAVORITE PLACES I NO LONGER LINK TO ANYTHING THATS VERY FAMOUS

philosopher.life, the 'wiki'/'avatar'/'life' of h0p3. serious rabbithole.

indieseek blog, bumped into brad somehow and we crosstalk a ton about the web.

linkport by joe jenett---blogs at i.webthings.

an eye on: ᛝ ᛝ ᛝ — lucid. whimsy.space, caesar naples.

indieweb: .xyz, eli, c.rwr, boffosocko.

nostalgia: geocities.institute, bad cmd.

true hackers: ccc.de, fffff.at, voja antonić, cnlohr, esoteric.codes.

chips: zeptobars, scargill, 41j.

dwm, julia, tridactyl these are things you'll want on linux.

neil c very famous but should be a world icon.

the world or cate le bon you pick.

sammyclassicsonicfan the original teen rage adventure.

innovation.isotropic.org probly the best carl chudyk game.

and opinionated gamers for non-chudyk game analysis.

my twitter. my github. minor things.

#xyz

I use three main tags on this blog:

  • hypertext: linking, the Web, the future of it all.

  • garage: art and creation, tinkering, zines and books, kind of a junk drawer—sorry!

  • elementary: schooling for young kids.

23 Aug 2018

Reply: Jasmine

Hi, Eddie! So you syndicated this post to Indieweb.xyz and it didn’t go perfectly. I had a bug that prevented your author name from displaying. I hope to provide some better tools so you can see what’s going on when you send a Webmention.

In the meantime, the bug should be fixed. Cute cat! (Oh, and this post should +1 Jasmine on /en/cats.)

This post accepts webmentions. Do you have the URL to your post?

You may also leave an anonymous comment. All comments are moderated.

15 Aug 2018

Reply: Indiewebwebwebindieindie

Simon Woods

Hopefully over time the feed will involve fewer articles about the IndieWeb. I mean, assuming we want more people to be interested, if not get involved; the harsh truth for us nerds is that most people don’t have the time or energy for mastubatory musings.

@simonwoods I’m guilty of a ton of navel-gazey, unchecked wankery of that type, even though I initially found that part of Indieweb pretty off-putting. (And the “blogosphere” that came before it.)

It’s an unfortunate thing that we have to do so much meta-discussion to make progress. But I guess when I look around at all the decrying of social media and silo-stuffing (you know, writing posts for Reddit) going on out there, I start to wonder if maybe that energy is best put into shameful blogging about blogging. I don’t know why such an act is so much more shameful than blogging about skiing, recipes or rash prevention—but it truly, truly is.

(Oh and @eli—thank you for making an attempt to crosspost to Indieweb.xyz. Never seen one from a micro.blog and you should be good now.)

  1. Thanks so much! I think my post to indieweb.xyz got muddled because it went from my website to telegraph.p3k.io while also being syndicated to micro.blog. Issues of hazy and lazy decentralization by silo-hopping. Whoops!

This post accepts webmentions. Do you have the URL to your post?

You may also leave an anonymous comment. All comments are moderated.

14 Aug 2018

Indieweb.xyz: Difficult or Silo?

A rundown of improvements—and the general mood—one month since opening Indieweb.xyz.

Ok, Indieweb.xyz has been open for a month! The point of the site is to give you a place to syndicate your essays and conversations where they’ll actually be seen.

In a way, it’s a silo—a central info container. Silos make it easy. You go there and dump stuff in. But, here in the Indieweb, we want No Central. We want Decentral. Which is more difficult because all these little sites and blogs out there have to work together—that’s tough!

Ok so, going to back to how this works: Brad Enslen and I have been posting our thoughts about how to innovate blog directories, search and webrings to the /en/linking sub on Indieweb.xyz. If you want to join the conversation, just send your posts there by including a link like this in your post:

<p><em>This was also posted to <a href="https://indieweb.xyz/en/linking"
  class="u-syndication">/en/linking</a>.</em></p>

If your blog supports Webmentions, then Indieweb.xyz should be notified of the post when you publish it. But even if your blog doesn’t support Webmentions, you can just submit your link by hand.

How Indie Do I Need to Be?

One of my big projects lately has been to make it very easy for you all out there to participate. You no longer need a ton of what they call ‘microformats’ everywhere on your blog.

You literally just need to:

  1. Include the link above in your blog post. (You don’t even need the class="u-syndication" part, but I would still recommend it. If you have multiple links to Indieweb.xyz in your post, the one marked u-syndication will be preferred.)
  2. Send the Webmention.

It helps if you have the microformats—this makes it easy to figure out who the author of the post is and so on. But Indieweb.xyz will now fallback to using HTML title tags (and RSS feed even) to figure out who is posting and what they are posting.

The Blog Directory

A feature I’m incredibly excited about is the blog directory, which lists all the blogs that post to Indieweb.xyz—and which also gives you a few hundred characters to describe your blog! (It uses the description meta tag from your blog’s home page.)

I think of Indieweb.xyz as an experiment in building a decentralized forum in which everyone contributes their bits. And Indieweb.xyz merges them together. It’s decentralized because you can easily switch all your Indieweb.xyz links to another site, send your Webmentions—and now THAT site will merge you into their community.

In a way, I’m starting to see it as a wiki where each person’s changes happen on their own blog. This blog directory is like a wiki page where everyone gets their little section to control. I’m going to expand this idea bit-by-bit over the next few months.

Just to clarify: the directory is updated whenever you send a Webmention, so if you change your blog description, resend one of your Webmentions to update it.

Bad Behavior and the Robot Police

We are a long way off from solving abuse on our websites. We desperately want technology to solve this. But it is a human problem. I am starting to believe that the more we solve a problem with technology, the more human problems we create. (This has been generally true of pollution, human rights, ecology, quality of life, almost every human problem. There are, of course, fortuitous exceptions to this.)

Decentralization is somewhat fortuitous. Smaller, isolated communities are less of a target. The World Trade Tower is a large, appealing target. But Sandy Hook still happens. A smaller community can survive longer, but it will still degenerate—small communities often become hostile to outsiders (a.k.a newcomers).

So while a given Mastodon instance’s code of conduct provides a human solution—sudden, effortless removal of a terrorist—there will be false positives. I have been kicked out, hellbanned, ignored in communities many times—this isn’t an appeal for self-pity, just a note that moderation powers are often misdirected. I moved on to other communities—but I earnestly wanted to participate in some of those communities that I couldn’t seem to penetrate.

So, yeah: rules will be coming together. It’s all we have. I’m impressed that the Hacker News community has held together for so long, but maybe it’s too much of a monoculture. HN’s guidelines seem to work.

Commenting

Last thing. A recent addition is a comment count on each submission. These comment counts are scraped from the blog post. It seems very “indieweb” to let the comments stay on the blog. The problem is that the microformats for comments are not widely supported and, well, they suck. It’s all just too complicated. You slightly change an HTML template and everything breaks.

Not to mention that I have no idea if the number is actually correct. Are these legit comments? Or is the number being spoofed?

I will also add that—if you submit a link to someone else’s blog, even if it’s an “indieweb” blog—the comment count will come from your blog. This is because the original entry might have been submitted by the author to a different sub. So your link contains the comments about that blog post for that sub.

Really tight microformat templates will need to become widespread for this to become really useful. In the meantime, it’s a curious little feature that I’m happy to spend a few characters on.

  1. In a way, it’s a silo—a central info container. Silos make it easy. You go there and dump stuff in. But, here in the Indieweb, we want No Central. We want Decentral. Which is more difficult because all these little sites and blogs out there have to work together—that’s tough!

  2. Reply: Indiewebwebwebindieindie

    Simon Woods

    Hopefully over time the feed will involve fewer articles about the IndieWeb. I mean, assuming we want more people to be interested, if not get involved; the harsh truth for us nerds is that most people don’t have the time or energy for mastubatory musings.

    @simonwoods I’m guilty of a ton of navel-gazey, unchecked wankery of that type, even though I initially found that part of Indieweb pretty off-putting. (And the “blogosphere” that came before it.)

    It’s an unfortunate thing that we have to do so much meta-discussion to make progress. But I guess when I look around at all the decrying of social media and silo-stuffing (you know, writing posts for Reddit) going on out there, I start to wonder if maybe that energy is best put into shameful blogging about blogging. I don’t know why such an act is so much more shameful than blogging about skiing, recipes or rash prevention—but it truly, truly is.

    (Oh and @eli—thank you for making an attempt to crosspost to Indieweb.xyz. Never seen one from a micro.blog and you should be good now.)

  3. Reply: Indiewebwebwebindieindie

    Simon Woods

    Hopefully over time the feed will involve fewer articles about the IndieWeb. I mean, assuming we want more people to be interested, if not get involved; the harsh truth for us nerds is that most people don’t have the time or energy for mastubatory musings.

    @simonwoods I’m guilty of a ton of navel-gazey, unchecked wankery of that type, even though I initially found that part of Indieweb pretty off-putting. (And the “blogosphere” that came before it.)

    It’s an unfortunate thing that we have to do so much meta-discussion to make progress. But I guess when I look around at all the decrying of social media and silo-stuffing (you know, writing posts for Reddit) going on out there, I start to wonder if maybe that energy is best put into shameful blogging about blogging. I don’t know why such an act is so much more shameful than blogging about skiing, recipes or rash prevention—but it truly, truly is.

    (Oh and @eli—thank you for making an attempt to crosspost to Indieweb.xyz. Never seen one from a micro.blog and you should be good now.)

  4. Thanks so much! I think my post to indieweb.xyz got muddled because it went from my website to telegraph.p3k.io while also being syndicated to micro.blog. Issues of hazy and lazy decentralization by silo-hopping. Whoops!

  5. Reply: Blogs in the Wild

    Brad Enslen

    There are blogs and bloggers out there, basically talking to themselves because nobody can find them. They don’t know if anybody is reading or appreciates what they post because nobody comments and they have no clue about Indieweb.

    I think evangelizing the raw Indieweb might be over at this point. The term is at least five years old.

    Webmentions have not had the uptake that even pingbacks had in their time. I still think it’s possible for platforms to find some hype—like Micro.blog has seen a lot of adoption, or Aperture might draw people in.

    But that’s okay. I think what you and I are doing will go like this:

    1. We hunt for homegrown blogs, sites, wikis and such just as we are right now.
    2. We build directories, webrings and syndication services that map out this world.
    3. The thing becomes a self-sustaining flotilla of: a) Talking, pitching in with each other’s projects. b) Experimenting with the format—I like to think that we’re developing an alternate timeline, as if blogs had replaced Friendster/Myspace rather than these other derivative networks. c) And customizing these directories and projects for subcommunities.

    This is all very unlikely. Somehow, I think saying it out loud
    makes it even more unlikely. But this is what I look forward to, personally.

    Difficulty: I think it is best if we have to do a little work to syndicate to xyz. I’ve thought about what if we could syndicate via RSS but that would spam xyz out. It does not need all my drivel, only my better (or longer) posts. And if you incorporated RSS then the real spammers would take over sooner or later.

    Maybe someone can talk me out of this viewpoint: I think needing to have your own domain name will be a big hit against spammers. Basically, I’d rather take the Gmail approach to spam prevention than the Facebook/Reddit approach to upvoting and algorithms. Clickbait is a hell of a lot scarier to me than spam.

    So spam prevention would involve:

    1. Limiting the number of webmentions that can come from a domain.
    2. The ability to blacklist at the domain or subdomain level. (And keeping a master list, perhaps overlapping with other blogspam lists out there.)
    3. Some subs will have moderation.
    4. Since we scan the source page for the Indieweb.xyz link, we can do other analysis at that time to detect spam.

    All that said, Indieweb.xyz doesn’t excite me nearly as much as the directories that we’re working on. Those are invulnerable to spam. They can also be laid out and edited to the nines. And I think you’d only need a handful of directories to make an impact.

    As always—really enjoy this ongoing discussion!

  6. 👍
  7. Reply: It Happened Again

    Okay. So I think I’ve sorted this out: in that long post that kept reposting, I had a link to several micro.blog posts (including one of yours). That one post was showing up as like three replies in the timeline.

    For my own reference (and others that I may point here), I did this to solve it:

    1. I don’t send Webmentions to any micro.blog links that are in the main text of my posts.
    2. I don’t include micro.blog replies in my blog’s feed. They will only show up as duplicates, since they are already sent as Webmentions.
    3. There is no need to attach an @-style username to the main text, since these are automatically added by the Webmention.
  8. Reply: It Happened Again

    Okay. So I think I’ve sorted this out: in that long post that kept reposting, I had a link to several micro.blog posts (including one of yours). That one post was showing up as like three replies in the timeline.

    For my own reference (and others that I may point here), I did this to solve it:

    1. I don’t send Webmentions to any micro.blog links that are in the main text of my posts.
    2. I don’t include micro.blog replies in my blog’s feed. They will only show up as duplicates, since they are already sent as Webmentions.
    3. There is no need to attach an @-style username to the main text, since these are automatically added by the Webmention.
  9. Reply: Micro.blog Mentions

    Josh Dick

    “There is no need to attach an @-style username to the main text…” Really? The doc says otherwise (bullet 4): Replies and @-mentions/.

    After playing with it quite a bit, it seems that—if you reply to a specific micro.blog post using a link (in this case: https://micro.blog/jd/820446), it’ll add the @-mention to the beginning if you send a Webmention. And you can also force the @-mention(s). So, if you’re mentioning several people, you’ll want to put those on—and, in that case, it’ll leave them however you have them.

    Great work on your site! I also use Jekyll and have been working on a fork of the ‘jekyll-webmention_io’ plugin that adds a bunch of features. I wish Jekyll was faster—my site takes over a minute to build now. Maybe I’ve done something. I have.

  10. Reply: Micro.blog Mentions

    Josh Dick

    “There is no need to attach an @-style username to the main text…” Really? The doc says otherwise (bullet 4): Replies and @-mentions/.

    After playing with it quite a bit, it seems that—if you reply to a specific micro.blog post using a link (in this case: https://micro.blog/jd/820446), it’ll add the @-mention to the beginning if you send a Webmention. And you can also force the @-mention(s). So, if you’re mentioning several people, you’ll want to put those on—and, in that case, it’ll leave them however you have them.

    Great work on your site! I also use Jekyll and have been working on a fork of the ‘jekyll-webmention_io’ plugin that adds a bunch of features. I wish Jekyll was faster—my site takes over a minute to build now. Maybe I’ve done something. I have.

  11. My question Kicks is what do I share there? All my long form posts? Posts associated with a particular topic?

This post accepts webmentions. Do you have the URL to your post?

You may also leave an anonymous comment. All comments are moderated.

30 Jul 2018

You can now customize your blog’s description on Indieweb.xyz. If you include a meta tag named xyz-blurb, its content will be used instead of the meta description tag. Escaped HTML can go in there. More to come.

This post accepts webmentions. Do you have the URL to your post?

You may also leave an anonymous comment. All comments are moderated.

Reply: The Indieweb and Academia

First off, re: open sourcing Indieweb.xyz—I’m driving toward that. I’m in a private repo on Github right now. But, man. It’s unnerving to open that kind of code when… it’s running live on my server. So I am trying to find the security holes before releasing it.

I don’t have big plans for Indieweb.xyz, but one thing I’m planning on adding is a way to create a whitelisted sub. You basically can make a list of URLs and those are the only URLs that can submit to the sub. Who knows, I might use Vouch for this. I just want to use something that makes it effortless.

I wonder if this might be useful for quick collaboration. Name the sub, link a bunch of websites together and then go to town, sharing stuff.

I also am creating a few themes for people who want to run their own Indieweb.xyz as well, since the one I’ve got is designed for the web at large—clearly not the arXiv crowd.

Cool ideas!

This post accepts webmentions. Do you have the URL to your post?

You may also leave an anonymous comment. All comments are moderated.

27 Jul 2018

This post accepts webmentions. Do you have the URL to your post?

You may also leave an anonymous comment. All comments are moderated.

25 Jul 2018

Reply: Brad’s Comment on ‘The Awesome Directories’

Brad Enslen

On some hypothetical future niche directory it’s that webring code that prevents the linkrot. As long as the webring/directories robot keeps finding that validation code you stay in the directory, no code and eventually you will be dropped. Not perfect but it automates the process a bit.

Ok, yeah—this will be essential. I wonder if I can use the page’s title tag for this? Like: save the title tag the first time I check the site. Because it’s much less rare for the title tag to change than the body text.

I like the idea of the webring code. I just don’t have any influence on some of the sites that I am linking to. But yeah: mixing webrings and Indieweb.xyz is interesting.

As for the size of a directory (or webring), that is such a big problem on the Web. They need to have upper limits, for sure. If it gets too big, it feels (and does become) unusable. If it’s too large, then nothing in it is special. Like with these “awesome lists”—you are led to believe that the list is a severe abridgement, because the links in it are truly impressive.

With webrings, someone is special by virtue of discovering the ring first. So I can see closing admittance. I’m not that into webrings because it’s a pretty fragile link between all parties.

I’d like linking to take some effort, which also limits the amount of links you can have and makes them more potent.

Thanks for the ideas! Great stuff.

  1. I’m not yet convinced webrings will work in 2018 for traffic. But even just a validation code would help indicate the site has lost it’s ability to be listed. OTOH a ring code gives traffic options to members 2 ways either from another member in the ring, or from the directory itself.

    The trick with a directory is the directory needs to attract visitors itself so it can disperse them out to those listed. If the directory provides no traffic there is little reason to be listed.

This post accepts webmentions. Do you have the URL to your post?

You may also leave an anonymous comment. All comments are moderated.

11 Jul 2018
10 Jul 2018

Reply: Cataloging Horror Fiction

Brad Enslen

The thing is with a static hierarchical directory you get stuck with the hierachy you built. Tags, even reddit semi permanent tags, are more dynamic and finer grained. By letting a site like Reddit create the categories you help stay on top of what topics are new and fresh. It’s like suggestions coming from the grass roots rather than top-down.

So, perhaps tags (or subreddit-style categories) are good for initial categorization and then a more detailed hierarchy is good for a competent editor. I also wonder: how did you track expired links? Changed links? Would you indicate that a story got an update?

Reddit has done a similar thing with wikis. By giving each subreddit a wiki, many are able to arrange a heirarchical directory of links. I guess I’m wondering if a wiki is a suitable replacement for a directory. Or if the only difference is having a crawler attached. (Which is a formidable difference.)

An idea I’ve had with Indieweb.xyz is to have users submit a finer-grained category using the u-category class. So they could submit:

<a href="https://indieweb.xyz/en/startrek" class="u-syndication u-category">
  xyz/startrek: Photos: DS9: Nog</a>

And it would place it in the permanent hierarchical directory (which crawls links to keep them fresh.) It feels like some moderation would be needed. But I am trying to stay away from that.

I appreciate your thoughtful replies. I am starting to both see how directories are present in our modern incarnation of the Web and desire some innovation for them.

This post accepts webmentions. Do you have the URL to your post?

You may also leave an anonymous comment. All comments are moderated.

05 Jul 2018

Reply: The IndieWeb, Discovery and Web Search

Brad Enslen

It seems to me, at some point, the problem of commercial silos of web search engines must be addressed since 1. a near monopoly is held by Google, 2. both spidering engines (Google and Bing) are oriented towards brands, data mining user profiles, advertising and the commercial. […]

Niche directories can still work when tied to an interest community (just ask almost any local Chamber of Commerce). Filter blogs might work too.

Fantastic. Yes! This is exactly the problem. It’s very difficult for a new participant to make headway because they simply get lost in the pile.

I think all of these approaches need to be reconsidered just like you’re doing, but I want to focus on directories—which are still very much in vogue, but are unrecognizable when compared to the old Yahoo. The big directories these days are Reddit and Pinterest. (And Wikipedia, like you say.) Delicious was one of these too. They are directories because they are topic-based catalogs of thought.

Niche directories exist in the form of stuff like Pinboard, Hacker News, Lobste.rs and so on. So, Hacker News acts basically like a directory of thought for its community. And the users there spend their time pruning and curating this directory.

All of these directories struggle with a sort of memory failure—no one really plumbs the archives of these sites—but that makes perfect sense given that the focus is on absolute recency. Part of the spectacular failure of Yahoo-style directories was due to no sense of recency (a heartbeat) on all those links.

The nice thing about Yahoo was that you could categorize yourself. Reddit, Pinterest, Pinboard—you have to wait for someone else to find you.

To your point about filter blogs: I think there used to be an answer here. It used to be that for topic-based technology blogs, much of their grassroots content came from mailing lists. Mailing lists used to be the primary announcement system for software. (If you look at technology blogs, they are much more commercial now.) So the mailing lists acted like a completely open submission system where you could safely self-promote. And then blogs skimmed their favorite stuff out of these. (IRC and web forums also acted as support systems here.)

So here’s what I’d like to see in a directory:

  1. Allows self-promotion. No one wants to leave a software (or fan art, essays, open question) announcement to their lonely blog. You want to push it out to the relevant community yourself.
  2. Sorting isn’t driven by upvotes or algorithms. You shouldn’t need to have to figure out how to game the system. Yes, these algorithms help prevent spam. But they enable clickbait!
  3. Drives users to the blogs themselves. Reddit isn’t just a directory—writers post their thoughts directly on Reddit. But those writers aren’t given all the tools. First off, the posts are limited in their layout. But also, they aren’t given syndication and identity tools like blogs have.
  4. Personal views of the directory. Right now it seems that we have this idea that our moderators should have the power to decide who’s in and who’s out. But this was never true of mailing lists. I still like the idea of killfiles. You block the specific users and blogs that drive you nuts.

I am trying to accomplish some of this with my directory Indieweb.xyz, but I’m also not sure it will all work due to self-promotion having problems of its own—in addition to being a dirty word on its own.

At any rate, wonderful post. Thankyou!

This post accepts webmentions. Do you have the URL to your post?

You may also leave an anonymous comment. All comments are moderated.