Read Blogging Less in the 2020s by Kicks Condor (Kicks Condor)
How frequently should you post to keep pace with the next decade?

h0p3 (at philosopher.life) who I just like to converse with and keep up with throughout my week

I’m curious what modality you use to converse? Am I missing some fun bit of something about that wiki?
–annotated on December 10, 2019 at 01:52PM

I like the thrust of this piece a lot Kicks. It’s also somewhat related to a passing thought I had the other day which I need to do some more thinking/writing on soon: On the caustic focus on temporality in social media.

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Chris Aldrich

I'm a biomedical and electrical engineer with interests in information theory, complexity, evolution, genetics, signal processing, theoretical mathematics, and big history. I'm also a talent manager-producer-publisher in the entertainment industry with expertise in representation, distribution, finance, production, content delivery, and new media.

4 thoughts on “”

  1. How do you converse with a wiki?

    Reply: The Hyperchat Modality

    Chris Aldrich 

    [wrt to my conversations with philosopher.life] I’m curious what modality you use to converse? Am I missing some fun bit of something about that wiki?

    Yeah—it’s quite hidden. We’ve been calling it hyperconversation. It’s very informal and fluid. It’s completely simple: just leaving messages for each other on our sites. No Webmentions necessary or anything like that.

    We’re actually trying to really push this concept right now. So there’s this sprawling group chat going on between my blog, philosopher.life, sphygm.us and wiki.waifu.haus for the last few weeks, going through December. The master thread is right here.[1]

    You might be tempted to say that using Webmentions would improve the chat because it would give us notifications. But I’m not so sure! The great thing about doing a chat like this is that you really have to keep up on each person’s wiki (or blog), because messages could be hidden anywhere. With Webmentions, you would read their reply and move on. (Think of how, in your reply, you had to reference this article for me—but there is probably a lot more relevant material on your site—I know this is true, just because you do a lot of metadiscussion about blogging and online conversation.)

    If you and I were to chat this way, we basically mutually agree to dig deep into each other’s blogs. Think of how this contrasts to ‘the temporality of social media’ that you mention.

    Chris:
    We’re being trained to dip our toes into a rapidly flowing river and not focus on deeper ideas and thoughts or reflect on longer pieces further back in our history.

    Taking this a level deeper, social is thereby forcing us to not only think shallowly, but to make our shared histories completely valueless.

    This is absolutely what we’re trying to figure out too, in our own way. Here’s a summary of what this group (the ‘public self-modelers’) is doing:

    • Cross-wiki chats get compiled and placed in permanent pages so that they can be referred back to and built upon.
    • Each individual works on writing master pages for specific concepts (Find The Others has been a topic that we’ve fleshed out together) or even for specific people (such as h0p3’s page on Sphygmus or my page on h0p3.) These personal pages are just good fun – a reminder that the point of our conversation isn’t just to explore a topic, but to get to know each other and goof around.
    • Because conversations and chats span months and months (compared to a Twitter thread, which may last only a few days,) even the ‘ephemeral’ threads are pretty solid, because a lot of thinking and back-and-forth have gone into them.
    • Since we’re not using a rigid protocol (like ActivityPub or microformats,) we can shape the conversation however we want. (For example, at one point we decided to start using each other’s colors when quoting – I think this was Sphygmus’ idea – so we worked on ‘whostyles’ – you can see them on my Hypertext%20%20 page. So we don’t really care about protocols. We care about messing with the hypertext. They’ve each done a lot of work tweaking their wikis. So there’s an aesthetic component.) So we’re not just work on permanent writing – but long-term design/art projects, too.

    People seem very focused on technological solutions to online communication (ActivityPub, Indieweb, this absurd BlueSky idea), but the hyperconversation approach is trying to prove that the problem is a human problem. If you read and listen to each other and try to respond thoughfully and carefully – and try to find your own style and wee innovations along the way – you start to feel like you don’t need anything more complicated than a TiddlyWiki!
    That’s been a very stunning realization for me. (As I’ve been an Indieweb zealot as well, of course.) Thank you for your curiosity and for your excellent blog and for your work on improving the Web! You are one of the main writers that I feel has been keeping the Web healthy. You connect a lot of people, Chris. That’s human work.


    1. Right now you have to weed through it all, but I will be publishing a finalized, edited chat on my home page when it’s over. ↩︎

    Syndicated copies:

    1. Kicks, apologies for attempting to “bait” you, but this is almost exactly what I had hoped your response would entail. However, I didn’t expect it would be as deep as it is in experimentation already! I had looked at a few of the wikis involved, but couldn’t discover how to directly create an account or contribute to them to push into the conversation. I’m far from a Tiddlywiki expert and just couldn’t figure out the direct means of participating. I’ve got more experience in some of the MediaWiki space which makes a bit more sense to me. 

      Quite often in contributing to the IndieWeb wiki, I feel like I’m having a conversation both with the wiki and also the broader community, though it’s often a longer tail conversation instead of a faster moving social media sort of conversation. I do often wish that MediaWiki supported incoming Webmention so that I could just mention a wiki page and have the link to my post added to the “See also” section or a Webmention section so that it could be copied into the wiki as an example. It certainly has the potential of adding knowledge to the content of such a site.

      The ability to be able to log into a community wiki with my own site and contribute to it is a powerful thing. Even better if the wiki tells me about updates to pages I contribute to, so I can continue to be a part of that discussion. I also frequently watch the recently updated page to follow changes in the broader-ranging conversation.

      Wiki-based conversations like this also remind me a bit of the recent Blogging Futures conversations done with the concept of the “blogchain”. In some sense it is a different linking method than webmention, but works roughly the same, though without all the sides being able to necessarily own the entirety of the conversation or necessarily having pointers/links to the main conversation. Webmention and syndication links help to solve both of these problems.

      Each individual works on writing master pages for specific concepts (Find The Others has been a topic that we’ve fleshed out together) or even for specific people (such as h0p3’s page on Sphygmus or my page on h0p3.) These personal pages are just good fun – a reminder that the point of our conversation isn’t just to explore a topic, but to get to know each other and goof around.

      I almost immediately grok the idea of “whostyles” and think that’s a brilliant sort of way to do some of these conversations and differentiating, particularly on a wiki. Scaling it into a broader non-technical public may require some work though.

      I’ll have to look closer on what is going on in these cases and figure out how to contribute. In particular, I’d like to look at your note that webmentions aren’t necessary and how that works out in practice. One of the things I love about Webmentions is the ability of both sides to “own” copies of the conversations, so that even if one side of it disappears, the other can live on as a reference, even if only to the site owner.

      I set up my own MediaWiki site last year, but it has a few technical problems that need fixing to get it working the way I need it to. I’ve also started looking into TiddlyWiki as well.

      For me, ideally, I’d love to be able to span the bridge of traditional CMS/blogging-based websites and wikis to get the best of all worlds. I keep referring back to Mike Caulfield’s article The Garden and the Stream: A Technopastoral for philosophical guidance. I know he’s done some interesting wiki-based experimentation before, including building a WordPress-based wiki set up in the past. Some of that work was based on Ward Cunningham’s Federated Wiki ideas, but it’s been a few years since I’ve experimented with any of it.

      Of course a lot of this goes back to an idea of Tantek’s

      The Read Write Web is no longer sufficient. I want the Read Fork Write Merge Web. #osb11 lunch table. #diso #indieweb

      And isn’t that the dream?

       

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