Yesterday I joined in the West Coast Homebrew Website Club via Zoom. I was worried I'd be too tired to join - it was held 9-10:30pm my time - but after a nice dinner and wind-down from the day I was in a pretty good place.
For my part, I continued research into the cursed project that I've been noodling on for years and finally started during IndieWebCamp 2020 West. My goal is to give folks a free way to dip their toes into the IndieWeb without needing to understand the building blocks first, but with on-ramps to understanding, customizing, and improving any part of it. While I am learning a lot from projects like Postr, I think I will end up actually making my own version of building blocks like authorization, token, and micropub endpoints. By way of being careful, I would like to be able to test that each one works properly. So that's how I ended up volunteering to help build out the IndieAuth.rocks test suite. 😅
I really enjoy and appreciate these meetups and I look forward to joining the next one!
jmac.org — Moved to NYC and started attending local HWCs just before The Lockdown. Very interested in Webmention as a technology to connect websites to one another - but wants to improve the focus on how it can be used for real human interaction!
martymcgui.re — Long-time IndieWeb and NYC organizer. Been working on lots of random projects. Currently thinking about turning his pile of "read" posts, largely dumped from GoodReads, into more usable pages about what he's reading now, reading next, and read recently.
david.shanske.com — Long-time IndieWeb and NYC organizer. Been working on location features, aspirationally. Looking forward to a time when he can thrill audiences by reporting being in a location other than "Home".
Sandro — Has been building CMSes and more for years. Been working on some new stuff that works even offline!
Kevin — Worked w/ sandro at Limewire some years ago! Attended past HWC SF meetings in the Before Times. Has been calling into the West Coast virtual meetings, first time calling into East Coast. Wants his site (zootella.com) to publish to 3 places - webserver, local files, and Beaker Browser (just went 1.0!)
Mike — Did web development for years, then stopped, now back again! Learned about IndieWeb through Micro.blog community. Interested in making sure the software he develops is a "good IndieWeb citizen". Working on a kind of Meetup competitor.
jgregorymcverry.com — Long time IndieWeb and NYC organizer. Currently working on a website for a poetry radio show. Folks from all over the world can submit clips. It's wiki-based, but can also receive webmentions.
gRegorLove.com — In San Diego, but joining East Coast to see some new faces. Been out of IndieWeb-land for a bit but dipping toes back in.
kevinmarks.com — Long-time IndieWeb. Microformats co-founder with Tantek and has been blogging forever!
Talked a bit about how Beaker works. You make edits locally and then they are published from your own machine. Others on the Beaker network can share your site. Everything is signed with keys and content-addressable so you're the only one that can make changes to your published stuff.
Beaker left behind DAT in the 1.0 release, breaking old URLs. They promise to never do this again, though?
Kicks Condor did some good writing on Dat:// and how Beaker used it, as well as Duxtape, a tool that he built to share mixtapes over Dat.
Kevin Marks has done a presentation on Dat, as well! Went through it in the Zoom. Compares to Web Packaging, including issues with content-addressability like trying to apply copyright takedowns and censor content.
With so many tools, projects, protocols, and more available that solve different parts of the problems of self-publishing, how can we encourage more folks to pick them up and use them instead of silos?
Owning your own content and publishing compared to organic foods. It's more involved and expensive, and some folks see it as niche or unnecessary, but you get benefits for the effort!
Twitter rolled out a feature to control who can reply to specific tweets. Predictably, they were terriblysmug about it.
Context collapse is a problem everywhere on the web, but it's such a deep problem on Twitter that maybe they can't claw it back. So, this feature is a maybe almost-good idea that won't actually help the folks who receive the most abuse.
gRegor reviewed recent updates to php-mf2 that are very close to a new release!
jmac.org working on a command line tool called Whim (link?) to allow folks to receive and process webmentions. Hopes to have something for folks to play with in the next month. This was kicked off by a friend trolling him by sending webmentions and nudging him to support posting short notes to his own site.
kevinmarks.com is revisiting mention.tech to fix some issues with timing out on unresponsive pages.
jmac.org — writing about webmentions on fogknife.com. Learned a lot about them through sending a "strange" RSVP to an event at events.indieweb.org. The RSVP was a longer post, which also included an RSVP inside it. events.indieweb.org treated the post as both an RSVP and a blog post about the event. Jason enjoyed learning about moderating webmentions through that experience! He also accidentally reposted a bunch of links to IndieNews because his site moved from http to https, and those are "new links". Eek!
aaronpk.com — had some time between giving a workshop and speaking at allthetalks.online. can now post photos from his Nintendo Switch to his website by making a new Twitter account that is just for posts from his Switch, then setting up a cron task to pull and post new tweets to special tags on his site, like the #ACNH tag for posts from Animal Crossing New Horizons.
david.shanske.com — now a member of NOAA's Citizen Weather Observing Program (CWOP)! Making him an official weather source. Working on a large project of archiving IndieWeb event videos from YouTube to archive.org. Hopes to find interested in re-watching some older IndieWebCamp videos to reconstruct notes that were lost when Mozilla recently shut down their Etherpad instance.
martymcgui.re — Still posting one cat GIF per day during the COVID-19 shutdown in NYC. Recently started work on a "consolidated watch later" list using IndieWeb building blocks - mostly with microsub channels in Aperture as a queuing mechanism.
Other topics of discussion.
Home studios! aaronpk has a very nice setup with multiple cameras, switchers, and great lighting. Marty has some parts on order so he can use a DLSR as a webcam. GWG has a nice set up also!
Personal "this is how I IndieWeb" pages might be useful for helping on-board developers, since each is a personal setup and won't immediately be considered "expert advice". For example, Marty's page on the IndieWeb wiki. Starts at a very high level and adds more detail the further you read.
gRegorLove.com — gRegor is calling in from San Diego! Was at the recent IWC Austin. Currently working on updating site the header across his site to make it more responsive and now to be more consistent across his pages. He's also been playing w/ typography and vertical rhythm. More notes on that below!
martymcgui.re — Marty has not worked much on IndieWeb projects recently. Currently doing an Eternal Caturday project, posting one animated cat GIF per day while staying home and "social distancing".
svenknebel.de — Sven joins from Germany (where he is up late). Slowly getting back into IndieWeb projects via text files he wrote sometime around 2018. Looking over items labelled "really need to be done at some point".
cheuk.dev — Cheuk joins from London (and is also up late). Co-organized the IndieWebCamp London online event last weekend and learned a lot. Working on adding more IndieWeb building blocks to her site.
tiaramiller.com — Tiara is working on un-breaking how she updates her website. Also working with a Long Island Women in Tech group, helping make a sign-up page to automate invites to their community Slack. Her jobs is still making her go to work in person rather than work from home!
dmitri.shuralyov.com — Dmitri is currently joining from Canada! Worked on his website last weekend. Wants his iteration speed to be faster than industry change, but that wasn't true for the issue tracker that he runs on his site. It has a public API that he doesn't want to break for other people. Now forking that feature to his own site so he can make changes.
david.shanske.com — David remote participated in IWC London and has a lot of new projects! Currently working on making the links on the top of his site match those at the bottom.
tantek.com — Tantek is staying in under a shelter-in-place order in SF! His work is very virtual already, but he is now seeing almost no humans. Most recent site update was adding a recent photos grid to the sidebar on his site's front page during IWC Austin. Still posting (positive) photos every day!
mfgriffin.com — Matt maybe broke his indieauth/relmeauth setup for the IndieWeb wiki? Looking to fix that so he can go through his TODO list there. Wants to pick something to finish during this meetup!
jmac.org — Also fogknife.com. Jason is in NYC now and helping organize IndieWeb events. Learned of IndieWeb ~2 years ago, specifically interested in webmention. So much so that he wrote a Perl module for it! Builds his own CMS Plerd and wants to add webmention to it this summer in a way that other folks might be able to use. So far he has something like a clone of webmention.io that works as a command line utility.
jgregorymcverry.com — Greg had a productive IWC London. Added CSS subgrid (now supported in Firefox) to the article cards on his site. Also added fluffy's webmention.js to his article pages so his site now displays webmentions! He thought it would be harder. Spending his time now making lots of videos and posting them as he tries to make tutorials for teachers who must now teach online. Recently added bittorrent links to his videos because they're eating up a lot of bandwidth on his shared host.
boffosocko.com — Chris joins us from LA! Been working on a TiddlyWiki for his own site. He is interested in using it as a Commonplace Book, taking notes on all sorts of things, and wants to add proper microformats2 and webmention support so his wiki can interact with those of others!
Drew — Joins us from Connecticut (and often attends HWCs organized by jgregorymcverry.com). Drew is a preschool teacher and is working on his district's website. Also working on mcweeneyaquaticconsulting.com and demoed some of the layout features he's been working on.
Other topics of discussion:
Vertical rhythm and typography! gRegor has been learning about it for his site and found several interesting resources:
How do all the IndieWeb bridges work for IRC, Slack, Matrix, etc? IRC is Freenode, the web and Slack bridges are community projects maintained by Aaron Parecki, Matrix.org runs a Freenode bridge for Matrix users, the Discord bridge is maintained by another community member.
EXIF metadata - there are a lot of incompatible versions of it with a lot of special-case handling!
jmac.org — Is now in NYC for the foreseeable! Looking forward to more IndieWeb events in NYC. Put up a "Now" page in December, and ended up chatting with the person who recently started the trend of making Now pages. Has been dusting off his Perl modules like Web::Mention and Web::Microformats. Also has some publisher interest and a draft outline for an introductory book on Webmention!
dmitri.shuralyov.com — Has wrapped up his work on building IndieAuth into his site so that other folks can log in using their own domain as their identity. He's now getting back to making improvements to his Go projects issue tracker. The first step there is to pull his projects off the
public version of his issue tracker into a new private one so he can iterate on it quickly without affecting other users. He's also been playing with various databases available to Go and is leaning towards not worrying about selecting one now. Instead: keep content in memory and don't let your server process die. 😂
filippo.io — First time at an IndieWeb event! His day job is security for the Go language project. At the meetup tonight he added links to his site to enable RelMeAuth, which let him log into Dmitri's website using his own website as his identity!
aaronparecki.com — Spent lots of time getting his new open source events service Meetable in shape to be as easy as possible to install. He built configuration wizards to help walk through the setup process on shared hosting, and automated away even more of the work when you launch it on Heroku! Aaron also recently updated his /photos to include captions when you hover over them. This helps them show up correctly on micro.blog so he can be part of the February photo challenge. Aaron also showed off SIMTRACKER — a WiFi e-Ink badge he's been working on that pulls an automatically-generated image off his website to summarize his recent activity, including food, drink, sleep, time away from home, phone battery, and more. Oh, and he published a new book 😏.
!!con (Bang Bang Con) is happening May 9th-10th in NYC. The call for proposals for 10 minute lightning talks is open! Proposing a talk means you're guaranteed a ticket to the event!
We may try new venues for IndieWeb NYC meetups, including Columbia University (near Broadway and 125th St) and the Ability Project at NYU (Brooklyn near MetroTech).
Filippo doesn't like JSON Web Tokens, publicly, because they are too easy to configure insecurely. Aaron warns that they are getting baked deep into a new draft of some OAuth spec. 😬
Some discussion was had about verifying two-way links between your homepage and your silo account for RelMeAuth. When making indielogin.com, Aaron decided to verify that the silo account links back after the user has logged in to their account — primarily because using the silo's API is so much more reliable than trying to scrape their silo profile information.
Aaron walked Marty through the process of setting up a new instance of Meetable on Heroku and it went pretty dang smoothly, though there was one server error speedbump. There's already a GitHub issue for it.
Maybe Aaron will work on making IndieLogin easy to self-host, soon??
Aaron recently experienced a weird bug with yellow streaking in low-light photos on his iPhone. Searching around indicated that other people had experienced the same thing ... and that it went away with the latest software update. Strange errors in HDR processing? It's weird that cameras are computers.
Everybody loves WireGuard as a magic-feeling VPN tunnel thing. Aaron recently got it working on his home network without running the WireGuard software on his router(s). He plans to write this up soon!
Thanks to all who came out! We will see you all again in March! Keep an eye on indieweb.nyc for the exact date, time, and location! You can subscribe to the calendar there to receive automatic updates!
dmitri.shuralyov.com — Made even more progress on integrating IndieAuth into his site! In addition to letting people log in to his site with GitHub profile URLs (github.com/username), he has finished changes to allow folks to log into his site with their own URLs via IndieAuth. Along the way he learned a lot about and contributed to the IndieAuth spec! He wrapped up and deployed it at this meetup!
martymcgui.re — Since last time, create a very minimal indieweb.nyc site for folks that want to track IndieWeb events in NYC. This was just a few week's ahead of Aaron Parecki'slaunch of events.indieweb.org. 😂 Marty plans to continue updating indieweb.nyc but now has the events there link to events.indieweb.org.
Other topics of discussion
Tiara, Matt, and Jason were missed! Jason has been involved in the IndieWeb for a while, and we're excited to have him join the NYC community!
The new IndieWeb events site is great! Marty is looking forward to using it for future IndieWeb NYC meetups.
dmitri.shuralyov.com — Made lots of progress on understanding IndieAuth and how he might integrate it into his site. Starting with GitHub profile URLs (github.com/username), he will expand to allowing folks to log into his site with their own URLs. Been working on the user experience aspects of this, as it needs to be attractive and easy to do. Currently working to clear his development plate for his site by wrapping up some features related to notifications before getting back to auth-related work.
martymcgui.re — Hasn't had much time to work on website projects, so spent today making event posts for a couple of upcoming improvshows. Also worked on barebones event feeds for indieweb.nyc, which is so very much a work in progress. Very excited to have started planning an IndieWebCamp NYC for early 2020 at NYU. Details below and many more to come!
Other topics of discussion:
David and Tiara were missed! Calendar reminders would have helped, so this is now a top-priority feature for indieweb.nyc. 😅
Paths to getting people started on their own webpages. Dmitri recently helped his mother set up a starter static site on GitHub pages, which only took a couple of hours, but provided the benefits she wanted. If she wants more features in the future, this was easy enough that she won't feel bad "throwing it away".
NYU Tandon can host an IWC NYC in Spring 2020! Can reserve 3 main rooms and additional classrooms for breakouts. Located in Brooklyn at Jay St./Metrotech. Tentative weekends include late March/early April and mid-to-late May. Will add suggestions to /Planning soon!
Complexity of managing "simple" "composable" cloud services (AWS Lambda, "infrastructure as code" projects like Terraform)
MacBook Pro 16" has been updated! It's so much like the 2015 MBP! Everything old is new again.
Thanks to everyone who came out and braved the crowded weekend tables. Apparently it is always crowded at Think Coffee Mercer, so perhaps we'll try a new venue next time! We hope that you'll join us for the next IndieWeb NYC meetup on December 7th. Watch indieweb.nyc for info about the exact time and location!
tiaramiller.com — Relaunched her site as a Hugo site hosted on Netlify during the recent IndieWebCamp NYC. Since then, has been working on adding features. Set up voxpelli's webpage-micropub-to-github on Heroku and was able to log into Indigenous and create a new like post! webpage-micropub-to-github is designed for Jekyll, so it created the post file in an unexpected place, but she should be able to tweak that and get things working. Also added herself (back) to the IndieWeb Webring.
mfgriffin.com — Upon some (possibly bad) advice from Marty and Tiara, Matt worked towards hosting his Hugo-powered site via GitHub and Netlify, rather than compiling it on his laptop and uploading the finished HTML to a server. Ran into issues with git submodules, and then a version mismatch between the theme he was using and the version of Hugo on Netlify. He was able to update the published HTML pages to let himself login to indieweb.org to review his todo list, meaning he made it to "step zero" on his list of goals for the day.
martymcgui.re — Working on indieweb.nyc, a site for IndieWeb events in and around New York City. Mostly spent time on plumbing, setting up a barebones Hugo site and hosting it on Netlify. Keeps finding himself pulled between desires: to get barebones content up, to allow interested folks to add events to their calendar, to work on plumbing that will make it easier to manage events via micropub, and to work on styling, theming, and logo.
Thanks to everyone who came out and braved the crowded weekend tables. Apparently it was midterms time at NYU? We hope that you'll join us for the next meetup, on November 16th. Watch indieweb.nyc for info about the exact time and location!
rasulkireev.com (new!) — New to the IndieWeb and attending his first meetup! Has been building his own websites for a while, learning a lot about web development. Currently working on a version of his site based on Django, and interested in adding IndieWeb building blocks, starting with rel=me.
martymcgui.re — Working on his write-up(s) post-IndieWeb Summit. Made some small progress today. 😅 Also wanting to streamline his iOS Shortcuts-based workflows for posting to his site, taking personal notes, etc.
We should bring signs or other IndieWeb indicators to these meetups! I'm so used to a few regulars that I didn't expect new folks. Thankfully Rasul found me! 😬
We talked about soooo many building blocks! Webmention (and how to use them to RSVP), Micropub (and how iOS Shortcuts can post using it), backfeed (responses from Twitter), storing data, hosting sites and content, learning new languages, learning new libraries, how and why to learn new web dev skills, and much more.
How did you get started building websites? Despite starting many years apart, we both had stories of building websites for groups we were part of or businesses we knew people from.
Staying in touch with the IndieWeb community, from chat (very high attention if you're in there all the time to low attention with the help of Loqi the chat bot and !tell commands) to the weekly newsletters.
Thanks to Rasul for coming out for his first IndieWeb Meetup! We missed Tiara, who was stuck on Long Island due to extreme train schedule changes. We also missed Matt G, who was at a wedding, but working on his website in spirit.
We look forward to seeing folks at the next meeting! Watch the Events page for details about the next meetup!
Here are notes from the "broadcast" portion of the meetup.
amyhurst.com — Did not work on her site today. Been updating her NYU-generated faculty page, instead, and thinking about how it fits in with her site. Trying to fix links to things like research papers, which are normally behind paywalls.
mfgriffin.com — Managing TODO lists today! Trapped in a "oh all these wonderful tools to choose from" situation. Made a lateral move to put his notes about IndieWeb into a local notebook in OneNote, re-reading them and splitting things up. Finding lots of old TODOs from IndieWebCamp and other meetings. Got FTP to his website functioning again. Amy reminds him to set up griff.fun to redirect to his main site, as it's parked right now.
tiaramiller.com — Been learning Amazon Web Services stuff, finding lots of IndieWeb examples of folks hosting on S3 and other services there. Doing research and making lists for things to try and learn next.
martymcgui.re — Updated his homepage feed of upcoming events. Previously, it would show future events that he had posted on his site, but it now also shows RSVPs
Other topics of discussion
We got a pretty decent table and an outlet, even! Sundays are pretty quiet here so that's good. The A/C was quite aggressive, though!
AWS does so many things and also has a very steep learning curve!
IndieWebCamp shirts are available now in two styles!