Author Image Posts for September, 2014

This has been the week of hell. 4 server outages after a year and a half with none, all unrelated. I lost a filling tonight so everything hurts. And now I cannot sleep.

An Open Call

Open call to all you web developers,  bloggers,  and people who just want to try a new way to identify your internet self.  Check out the indieweb.


Known applogogWant the easy way / tldr ? Just check out and try creating your own site there.  Simple, clean, and powerful: Known has a lot going for it.  Simple, clean, and powerful: Known has a lot going for it.

So how is this different from any of the blog platforms out there?   Well a number of ways.   First, you own your data.   Lets say Facebook goes offline tomorrow.  What are you left with?  Where are your photos?  What happened to all those things you have been writing / collecting all this time?   Its all gone.  You didn't get a say in it,  you didn't want it, you didn't have the power to stop it.  Tell me again how you own your data?   These site deaths happen all the time, with the most recent being twitpic.  Twitpic used to be a great way to share photos on twitter before they did that themselves.  Its gone,  people lost photos.   Lets also think about what happens if your account gets locked for some reason.  Gone. No chance to back up.   You get the point.  


The Indieweb

The indieweb says you should have everything you create owned and controlled by you.  Just by the fact that you have access to all your own data, you have control of it.  Things stay online as long as you want.  If you want to use Facebook, or Twitter, thats up to you.  But there should be another choice that doesn't mean you lose all your friends.  Which brings me to the next bit, Interoperability.

At this point some of you might think "Hey. I've got a WordPress blog."  That's a good start but let's be honest, you still have friends on  Twitter.  How do you interact with them without just logging in to Twitter and posting there?  Well in the indieweb there is a concept called POSSE.  This backronym stands for Post on Own Site, Syndicate Everywhere.  Instead of posting to Twitter, you post a note on your site and have the code copy this message over to Twitter for you.   Where this really gets neat is the code could then watch that post for any comments and bring those comments back to your site.   Your friends using Facebook can see what you post and you can see their comments.   

Now all your data is in one place.   So what?   Well now you really have an identity online.   Not just a  collection of accounts but really a digital YOU.  Because of this you need some way to identify yourself.  So get a domain name.   Your URL becomes your name.   No one else can own that name.   I own  If I want to create an account on some site it would be great if I could just tie my account to the fact that I own that site.  Whenever I want to login all I'd have to do is again prove that I am the owner of that site.


Enter IndieAuth.

IndieAuthIndieAuth does all this certification in a few simple strokes.   I provide my url as a login to a site.   Then I'm presented with all the sites that it knows I have an account on that it can validate those accounts (Twitter, Google+, etc.), I allow access to it and thats it.  I'm logged in.  Done.  "How does that work?" you might ask.  Well lets look at an example.  If you look at my site you will find a series of links tagged rel="me".  This basically says that this link has a relationship: my account on some other site.   One of those links is for my Google+ account.  My Google+ account has a link pointing to my site with rel="me" on it as well (many sites already include that rel="me" tag).   Now you know for sure the Google+ account of whoever owns my site.  So its just a matter of using the API for Google+ to authenticate as that user.  I personally use Google+ all the time because of the two factor auth setup of it (I need my phone the first time I login on a new computer... Everyone should be doing this).  There is a list of sites we can already use for this method.   No new passwords,  just wonderfully simple authentication.

Once you start there you can head south lots of different paths.  Private posts to certain friends.   They don't need a login on your site,  you just post straight to them.  Private messaging or maybe private chat rooms.  The privacy of these conversations is entirely up to you.  You don't have to worry about AOL looking at your conversation, they don't control it.  How about hosting events, posting videos, liking pages, sharing bookmarks?   Its all under your control.

We are just scratching the surface of a whole new type of social networking.   Want to come be part of it?   Maybe you could help define the future of it.   Or maybe you just want a new blog with some cool new features.  Try out Known at or come check out the wiki or join the chat at

Should have left work like 1 minute earlier. Could have shaken hands with @ElizabethWarren. I was like 10 feet away as she was entering a building. I thought better than running up to her. Didn't want to get tackled by security or anything.

@el_boby While some in #indiewebcamp don't open source their projects, doesn't mean you should dismiss the group as a whole. Some of us do.

#indieweb hard to argue that if I had only kept DB copies of all my old data i'd have them around still... its only because all my notes and logs from the past are in individual text files that i still have them. Hows that for long term storage.

Everyone is freaking out about #indieweb and the characterization of databases as an antipattern. Its not inaccurate though. DBs are highly fragile and create a closed box you can only access through an API.

I need to get a invite. I bet I could figure out syndication to there as well. Any of my Japanese friends able to hook me up?

Think I have the webmention issue fixed Kyle. Assuming this goes through code will be available soon for public consumption.

kyle, trying once more with as much debugging on as I can to figure out why it isn't sending... i may end up spamming this post a bit.

Yesterday's <a href="">This Week In Google</a> was has been posted for those interested in the IndieWeb.

Now bridgy is acting up.. I just can't win. Also using it with in-reply to. Never tried to reply to my own post actually.

Hmm still having some trouble logging in to my micropub client page First post from the train though.

Hello Facebook, hopefully

As today is hack day at #IndieWebCampUK I have decided it is finally time to start testing out syndicating all my longer posts to FaceBook. 

Starting last week I began having my site cross post all my quick notes to twitter.  These notes will hopefully be small and get posted often.  I don't want to flood everyone's FaceBook feed, so I won't do all of those, but I will share any longer ones.

What the hell am I talking about? Well its pretty cool.  I make a post on my site, it sends a message to a and where I already signed up and gave it access to twitter and facebook.  Next, it will automatically post to those sites and include a link back to the original post (you can turn that off).  Okay, thats a little neat, but here's where it gets really interesting.  It will continue to watch the posts it made on my behalf on facebook and twitter.  If anyone likes/favorites, comments/replys, it will pass that information back to my site so I can display it on my page.  Any response from twitter or facebook will all be in one place.  I will eventually do this to Google+ as well, but there I have to make the post manually.

A big thanks to the gang at for making this all possible.  They are really figuring out a new way for the web to work.

Also note, I know the site needs a lot of graphical work.  Give me a break, I'm not a designer.  I'll be updating it slowly as I have time.


Twitpic gone? Really? Yet another loss in the set of site closings. I have always tried to keep backups of anything I post on silos (hell I still have my livejournal archive from back in the day) but I feel bad for all those that lost all their photos.

Try this again. Now that I have twitter and happy. Lets post from right across to twitter.