👓 Giving Up On IndieWeb | Glenn 2.0

Read Giving Up On IndieWeb by Glenn DixonGlenn Dixon (glenn.thedixons.net)
(Further update:  webmentions are working!!!) (UPDATE: It’s now been a year since I first posted this. Just today I discovered a year-old blog post which mentioned this one, and an ensuing discussion. Of course I knew nothing of this because – well, I couldn’t get webmentions to work! I have ...
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Reply to Sara Soueidan about front end development feeds

Replied to a tweet by Sara SoueidanSara Soueidan (Twitter)

I tinker on my own website and frequently write about IndieWeb related technologies because the web is my social media platform. The feed you might appreciate most is https://boffosocko.com/category/indieweb/feed/.

I have feeds for nearly every tag/category or post type on my site for convenience (just add /feed/ to almost anything). You could subscribe to my firehose feed, but I suspect even my mother would tire of it quickly.

I’m curious if you have OPML files or similar bundles of feeds you follow that are shareable or subscribe-able?

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👓 Controlling How Webmentions are Rendered | ruk.ca

Read Controlling How Webmentions are Rendered by Peter RukavinaPeter Rukavina (ruk.ca)
Ton continues to wrap his head around Webmention, and wonders about how mentions should be displayed on the “mentioned” site: What strikes me as odd now is how little control I have over how the Webmention and Semantic Linkbacks plugins actually deal with webmention data. The stuff I’d like to...
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👓 A Close Look at How Facebook’s Retreat From the News Has Hurt One Particular Website—Ours | Slate

Read A Close Look at How Facebook’s Retreat From the News Has Hurt One Particular Website—Ours by Will Oremus (Slate Magazine)
New data shows the impact of Facebook’s pullback from an industry it had dominated (and distorted).

(Roose, who has since deleted his tweet as part of a routine purge of tweets older than 30 days, told me it was intended simply as an observation, not a full analysis of the trends.)

Another example of someone regularly deleting their tweets at regular intervals. I’ve seem a few examples of this in academia.


It’s worth noting that there’s a difference between NewsWhip’s engagement stats, which are public, and referrals—that is, people actually clicking on stories and visiting publishers’ sites. The two have generally correlated, historically, and Facebook told me that its own data suggests that continues to be the case. But two social media professionals interviewed for this story, including one who consults for a number of different publications, told me that the engagement on Facebook posts has led to less relative traffic. This means publications could theoretically be seeing less ad revenue from Facebook even if their public engagement stats are holding steady.


From Slate’s perspective, a comment on a Slate story you see on Facebook is great, but it does nothing for the site’s bottom line.


(Remember when every news site published the piece, “What Time Is the Super Bowl?”)

This is a great instance for Google’s box that simply provides the factual answer instead of requiring a click through.


fickle audiences available on social platforms.

Here’s where feed readers without algorithms could provide more stability for news.

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👓 GitHub Is Microsoft’s $7.5 Billion Undo Button | Bloomberg

Read GitHub Is Microsoft’s $7.5 Billion Undo Button by Paul Ford (Bloomberg.com)
Steve Ballmer spent years hating on open source software. Satya Nadella recognized that the service has become indispensable to programmers.

A nice analysis piece about the GitHub purchase for the non-technical. It highlights the fact that a nice and simple UI can be worth its weight in gold.

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👓 Invisible asymptotes | Remains of the Day

Read Invisible asymptotes by Eugene Wei (Remains of the Day)
My first job at Amazon was as the first analyst in strategic planning, the forward-looking counterpart to accounting, which records what already happened. We maintained several time horizons for our forward forecasts, from granular monthly forecasts to quarterly and annual forecasts to even five and ten year forecasts for the purposes of fund-raising and, well, strategic planning.

A great long read covering some interesting portions of UX and strategy in the future of social. There are some useful tidbits for the IndieWeb to consider here.

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👓 human beings | Khürt Williams

Read human beings (Island in the Net)
I’m saddened that a blog post linking to another blog post might need to include a disclaimer even if some of it is in jest. A part of me thinks we’re headed down a path of permission based interactions. Both online and offline. If that happens during my lifetime I’ll exit this experiment called the USA, to places where human beings are still human beings.

I was being facetious and satirical, but all the same… This is just the type of response I was aiming at eliciting.

Fantastic photo, by the way!

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Replied to Add ability to edit Linkbacks type and fields manually · Issue #75 · pfefferle/wordpress-semantic-linkbacks (GitHub)
Add these fields to the edit comment form in the admin. Partially this is also to allow viewing of this data in the admin.

Some additional related thoughts/ideas:

For more easily editing webmentions (aka comments) and their types it would be nice if the Comments UI page (usually found at /wp-admin/edit-comments.php) could be modified to add some additional columns for improved UI/UX.

In particular it would be nice to have direct access to see and sort comments by the semantic_linkbacks_type field as well as potentially via dropdown UI to be able to modify the type (mention, reply, like, favorite, read, listen, etc.). In particular, I find I’d often like to take a basic webmention and turn it into a “reply” to show the full content (particularly while facepiling simple mentions) when it substantively adds to the discussion.

Until #166 is resolved it would be nice to also have easier manual access to be able to modify semantic_linkbacks_avatar in bulk when they either don’t exist or fail to resolve.

It would also be nice to be able to (via query parameters in the URL perhaps?) filter out certain webmention types in the Comment page view. As an example, this might allow someone to more easily see only replies without cluttering up the page with likes, bookmarks, etc. to more easily reply to commenters.

As a potential guide, there is a related plugin called Admin Columns which has some related code that allows adding arbitrary admin columns as well as editing and formatting them.

Mock example of additional columns for webmentions and types
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👓 Gmail’s biggest redesign is now live | The Verge

Read Gmail’s biggest redesign is now live by Vlad Savov (The Verge)
Snoozing, nudging, hover actions, and a new sidebar — it’s a mobile app on the web!

I’ve been using gmail for about 2 years now and am curious to see what this delivers though I do have to admit I’m itching to going back to my old methods of owning may own email and data.

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👓 Building a Text Editor for a Digital-First Newsroom | Times Open (Medium)

Read Building a Text Editor for a Digital-First Newsroom by Sophia Ciocca (Times Open | Medium)
An inside look at the inner workings of a technology you may take for granted

A topic which is tremendously overlooked in the CMS world, but which can provide a lot of power.

h/t Jorge Spinoza

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🔖 CNN Lite

Bookmarked CNN Lite (lite.cnn.io)
An uber low bandwidth and text only version of CNN. View the latest news and breaking news today for U.S., world, weather, entertainment, politics and health at CNN.com.

I just ran across a text-only version of CNN and I’m really wishing that more websites would do this. It’s like AMP, but even leaner!

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An IndieWeb Podcast: Episode 0 “Considering the User”

An IndieWeb Podcast: Episode 0 "Considering the User"

This is a test or alpha episode of An Indieweb Podcast (working title).

In it, David Shanske and and I talk about a variety of Indieweb topics, with the theme of “Considering the User”, inspired by an article we were reading this week. Other topics include: home automation, generations, itches, Webmention, and some examples of the Post Kinds Plugin in practice (exercise, issues, chickens).

In the future we hope to have additional broad ranging conversations and perhaps interviews with others about various IndieWeb related topics.

Part of this is also an opportunity to improve audio post presentations on our websites over time. While David posted the “original” of this post on his site, I had to debate whether or not I would technically repost it or make an original of my own. Ultimately I opted for the latter.

David, by far the more veteran podcaster, deserves the lion’s share of the credit for his audio set up and recording facilities.

You can subscribe to future episodes here: http://boffosocko.com/tag/an-indieweb-podcast/feed/

If you need more IndieWeb content, guidance, or even help, an embarrassment of riches can be found on the wiki, including the following resources:

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👓 A brutal redesign | Duncan Stephen

Read A brutal redesign (Duncan Stephen)
When I started to experiment with different ways of blogging, I realised what I was doing was a bit off. So I decided to redesign the blog.

I appreciate that others are grappling with these design ideas as well. I need to get back to some of my own work and experimenting in this area. It’s also a bit reminiscent of Dries Buytaert’s recent post Reclaiming my blog as my thought space in which he contemplates some of these types of issues and questions, though from a slightly different perspective.

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Adding Simple Twitter Response Buttons to WordPress Posts

Simple Twitter UI buttons on an IndieWeb-enabled site can allow Twitter to become part of your commenting system.

Back at IndieWebCamp Austin, I became enamored of adding additional methods of interacting with my website, particularly for those who weren’t already on the IndieWeb train. I’d seen these types of interactions already on Tantek Çelik’s site in the past, so naturally I figured I would start there.

Web Actions

Some basic searching revealed that in IndieWeb parlance, these types of functionalities are known as web actions. While they’re often added to make it easier for one site with the proper infrastructure to interact with another, they’re also designed for social web silos (Like Twitter, Facebook, et al.) to do this type of interaction simply as well.

As a small scale experiment, I thought I would begin manually and add some simple interface to allow Twitter users (who may not yet have their own websites to use to respond to me instead) to be able to quickly and easily reply to, repost, or like posts on my site. A little bit of reading on the wiki and Twitter’s developer site allowed me to leverage something into existence pretty quickly.

Interestingly, although there are many plugins that help users simply share a blog post to Twitter, I couldn’t easily find a WordPress plugin that already allows these other interactions as options at all. I suspect it may be because the other side of the interaction of bringing the replies back to one’s site isn’t commonly known yet.

Example

I was able to write a post, syndicate it to Twitter, upload the button images, and then inject the Twitter post ID (939650287622434816 in this example) for my syndicated copy into my post like so:

<span class="syn-text">Respond via Twitter:
<ul class="relsyn">
<li><a href="https://twitter.com/intent/tweet?in_reply_to=939650287622434816" target=""><img src="/reply-icon-16.png" alt="" width="16" height="11" /> Reply</a></li>
<li><a href="https://twitter.com/intent/retweet?tweet_id=939650287622434816" target=""><img src="/retweet-icon-16.png" alt="" width="16" height="10" /> Repost</a></li>
<li><a href="https://twitter.com/intent/favorite?tweet_id=939650287622434816" target=""><img src="/like-icon-16.png" alt="" width="16" height="16" /> Like</a></li>
</ul><script type="text/javascript" async src="https://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js"></script></span>

And voila! My new post now had some simple buttons that allow users a simple one click interaction with a popup window to reply to, repost, or like my post.

Displaying responses

Naturally, through the “magic” of Brid.gy, I’m able to collect these responses via backfeed with the Webmention protocol using the Webmention Plugin for WordPress back to my own website. In simpler and less technical terms, if you use one of these buttons, your interaction with my website as posted to Twitter comes back to live on my website. Thus users can use Twitter to write a comment or reply on Twitter and it will display in my comments section just as if they had written it directly in my comments box. Likes and reposts are sent to my site and are displayed relatively naturally as facepiles under the comment headings “Likes” and “Reposts”.

I’ll do another manual example with this particular post, so feel free to use the buttons at the bottom of this post to make your response via Twitter if you wish.

Future Improvements

Taking some of this code and abstracting into a plugin for others to use would be a nice feature. Doing this would also potentially make it available as a potential plugin in the larger IndieWeb suite of WordPress plugins. Perhaps it could be easily added into the codebase in one or another pre-existing plugins? I might think that David Shanske’s  Syndication Links plugin or Bridgy Publish plugin might make sense as they’re already adding functionality for part of the publishing half of the cycle by either publishing to Twitter and/or importing the Tweet ID back into one’s WordPress site for potential display. One or the other could do a simple if/then on the existence of a syndicated Tweet, then extract the Twitter ID, and add the buttons to the interface appropriately.

It would be interesting to add full mark up to make <indie-action> functionality possible for a broader class of web actions, particularly if it could be integrated directly into WordPress in a more interesting manner to work with the Post Kinds Plugin or the IndieWeb PressThis type of bookmarklet functionality.

Instead of having these types of interactions injected at the bottom of the post, it may make more sense to have it display in the comment block instead.

I suspect that Facebook, Instagram, and others also enable some types of functionality, so adding the ability to use them the same way would be awesome. And even more so in the case of RSVP’s to events since Brid.gy handles those relatively well between Facebook and WordPress sites. (See this example.)

Try it yourself

Go ahead and use the buttons below to interact with this post via Twitter.

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👓 Talk: “Designing away the cookie disclaimer” by Sebastian Greger

Read Talk: “Designing away the cookie disclaimer” (sebastiangreger.net)
This is the transcript of my lightning talk from the beyond tellerrand Berlin pre-conference warm-up on 6 November 2017. It was a condensed version of my longer, work-in-progress and upcoming talk on privacy as a core pillar of ethical UX design. If you are interested in the final talk or know about a conference or event that might be, I’d be thrilled to hear from you.

It’s sad the amount of not caring that both laws and apathy on the internet can make your life just dreadful in ways that it shouldn’t.

I love the fact that people are working on solving these seemingly mundane issues. This is a great little presentation Sebastian!

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