Jonathan Prozzi and I have challenged one another to make a post about improving our websites once a week. I'm a little late with this one!
I recently added support for displaying mentions, such as likes, reposts, comments, etc. from around the web that refer to the posts on my site. One thing the update didn't do is catch another type of mention, such as when someone mentions me in a tweet (example). These get fed to my website by brid.gy, but weren't displayed anywhere.
So, I created a /mentions page for displaying these mentions. In the future, when a post mentions my homepage, the result will show up on the mentions page.
My mentions still don't yet update in real time - they are compiled into my site whenever I make a new post. That's coming up in the future, but I have taken one more step towards real-time interactions with notifications!
Webmention.io, the service that I use for accepting and storing webmentions, has a WebHook option that can notify your site whenever a new webmention has been received. I wrote up a simple Python service using Flask that will listen for these messages from webmention.io and send them to me via PushBullet, a notification service that I've been using for a while for other projects.
Now, I'll see a notification on my phone and laptop when another site sends me a webmention!
I write a text script for each of these audio editions, which I would like to find a way to add to the post as a transcript for the audio. A couple of (silly?) things stopping me: (1) I’m not sure of the best way to lay that out and mark it up for the widest use and (2) My script format includes lots of notes-to-self that need to be cleaned up, adding yet-another-editing-task to getting this podcast out. :}
martymcgui.re has been busy since the last meeting. Added tags and displaying webmentions to his site. Launched Screech, a micropub client for posting audio. Uses it to post an audio edition of the This Week in the IndieWeb as a podcast. Started looking into better reply contexts for sites with no microformats2 info, maybe starting with Soundcloud (which requires using their API to convert permalinks into embeds) or using Aaron Parecki's X-Ray.
brianey.com missed the last meeting, so it's been a while. Working on a new site at thebrianyoung.com, set up his WordPress network to include IndieWeb plugins, including things like accepting Webmentions. Some small updates to imnotwrong.com. Committing to more (of everything) for next time.
eddiehinkle.com started blogging again back in February. Dusted off Jekyll and started delving back into IndieWeb. Reads a lot of books and wanted to have that info on his site from Goodreads. Uses a Node.js script to dump Goodreads data into Jekyll _data/ folder. Added microformats to pages. Posts project 365 photos to site, a little bit of a burden since everything is still manual. Current project is micropub. Plan is to set up a Node.js "controller" because he wants to do more responses and interactive things. Today added "On This Day", showing posts from the same day in previous years
maryreisenwitz.com was in the other half of the room working on laser-cutting projects, but did talk informally about wanting to add e-commerce to her site.
We discussed the shutdown of App.net, the upcoming micro.blog, the challenges of building everything yourself, and some of the laser-cutting projects that our host Mary was working on for an event next weekend.
We hope that you'll join us for the next HWC Baltimore in April back here at the Digital Harbor Foundation Tech Center! Check back soon for the date!
Webmentions are one of the most interesting and powerful technologies floating around the IndieWeb. At their most basic, they sites on the web to interact by sending a notification when a page on one site links to a page on another. When combined with machine-readable metadata like microformats2, they enable really neat social interactions between sites, feeding back likes, comments, bookmarks, shares, event RSVPs, and plenty more.
A site doesn't have to do all its own Webmention handling, and there are a few services that will handle them for you. I set up my website with the Webmention.io service back in August 2016 (so long ago!) and it's been accepting mentions from other sites since then. And, while there aren't a lot of websites that send Webmentions natively, there are services like Bridgy which uses Webmentions to backfeed social interactions to my site from sites like Facebook and Twitter. Pretty neat!
When I publish a post with a link to a site that support Webmentions, I still need to actually send that notification. I haven't yet built a tool that does that for my own website, but I have been able to make use of Aaron Parecki's Telegraph, which will take in a link to one of my posts and parse it for outgoing links, find out of the targets of those links support Webmentions, and allow me to send them with the press of a button. It's ridiculously easy to use and has the added benefit of letting me pick-and-choose which links go out as Webmentions.
Webmention.io has been collecting mentions for my site for something like 6 months, but they don't just magically show up on my site! Webmention.io provides an API for fetching the mention data for individual pages, or all mentions for my domain.
What works? Let's see!
Here's an example post with some Likes and RSVPs (both "yes"es and "maybe"s):
Overall, I'm really excited to finally be showing these on my site! I think Webmention is a pretty critical part of bringing the "social web" into the IndieWeb and back out of the silos. I am grateful to all the folks that have made this possible with their work on standards and tools!
Join GM @ThatOneGM, players @geowtf, myself, and very special guest @OneShotRPG for another thrilling adventure in the light-hearted fantasy police procedural that is Lawful & Orderly: Special Visions Unit.
Tonight’s episode is S1E11 - “DEAD RINGER”
Watch live and do your civic duty as a member of the jury to determine whether our detectives solve the crime and catch the perpetrator from 8pm to 10pm Eastern Time at twitch.tv/therpgacademy.
Catch up on our back catalogue at youtube.com/therpgacademy.
Space 26402640 Saint Paul St., Baltimore, MD, 21218
Ever worry that the internet knows more about you than you know about it? Companies, governments, and individuals can collect and track our communications and metadata whether we give informed consent or not. Meanwhile, those most vulnerable to these online risks may not have the greatest access to the information and resources to defend against surveillance and discrimination.
We can organize to change this, but in the meantime, there are also steps we can take to protect each other and to educate ourselves about what’s at stake. Learning to navigate digital space safely is a process, but you don’t have to get started alone.
Join us 3/19 for a workshop on digital privacy, inspired by the international Cryptoparty movement. We’ll talk about why surveillance matters for all of us and why you don’t need a technical background to start taking control of your online privacy. You’ll have a chance to ask questions, try out tools on your phone or laptop, and learn more about specific topics like mobile phone security, secure browsing, and more.
All people and all levels of experience are welcome.
The event will be FREE, however donations to help with the costs of the space and event will be welcome and appreciated! We’ll also have snacks available but welcome others to bring more to share, potluck style.
In addition to following standard IndieWeb-friendly practices like using microformats2 feeds, backfeeding social interactions from Twitter and Facebook with bridgy, and exploring other interesting audio markup tricks, I wanted a tool that made it easy for me to publish new content to my sites via the Micropub protocol, which supports sending audio media files.
I didn't see another micropub client in the wild that supported audio files in the way that I wanted, so I made my own.
Screech is an audio-publishing-focused micropub web client with a Python server component built on Flask. Screech supports logging in with your own site using indieauth and posts to your site's micropub endpoint.
It's still a work-in-progress, but the basic flows work well enough for my needs.
One fun feature of Screech is that once you select an MP3 file for upload, it uses the jsmediatags library to pull out information about the track, such as its duration, track title, album and artist info, etc. This info is outside the scope of the Micropub standard, but if you want to add support to your server, you'll see those properties arrive with names like "id3-title", "id3-artist", etc.
Edit, March 17, 2017 — Screech is available at screech.schmarty.net. If you'd like to run it yourself, add features, or fix bugs, you can find the source code and instructions on GitHub.
There are many TODOs yet on my plate for Screech before I'd consider it "done", such as micropub media endpoint support, syndication support, adding a photo to the post as a "poster" image, and more.
I'd love to hear feedback from the IndieWeb community! What do you think it means to be an "IndieWeb podcaster"? What features would make Screech useful for you?
Tonight’s episode is S1E10 - “The Dungeon Experience”
Watch live and do your civic duty as a member of the jury that will determine whether our detectives have solved the crime and caught the perpetrator from 8pm to 10pm Eastern Time at twitch.tv/therpgacademy.
Thanks to everyone for the feedback so far! In responding to a couple of listener requests, I slowed my speaking rate down for this week’s updates. However, because I am re-using some common clips, it sounds like I am speeding up and slowing down quite a bit. My apologies for any confusion this causes! I plan to re-record the common samples soon.