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cleverdevil

cleverdevil

cleverdevil

cleverdevil

cleverdevil

cleverdevil

www.npmjs.com/~cleverdevil

cleverca.st

trakt.tv/users/cleverdevil

mastodon.social/@cleverdevil

 

My iOS Health database is filled with information now, and I think I’ve decided that my project for IndieWeb Summit will be to integrate HealthKit with my website. Collaborators welcome! Especially collaborators with iOS development experience! 👨🏻‍⚕️

 

The New Yorker features the IndieWeb and Micro.blog

Excited to see that the IndieWeb has been featured in The New Yorker:

...a loose collective of developers and techno-utopians that calls itself the IndieWeb has been creating another alternative. The movement’s affiliates are developing their own social-media platforms, which they say will preserve what’s good about social media while jettisoning what’s bad. They hope to rebuild social media according to principles that are less corporate and more humane.

I’m not a big fan of the term “techno-utopian,” but hey, visibility is good.

The article also includes an entire section on Micro.blog:

In 2017, Manton Reece, an IndieWeb developer based in Austin, Texas, launched a Kickstarter for a service called Micro.blog. On its surface, Micro.blog looks a lot like Twitter or Instagram; you can follow users and see their posts sorted into a time line, and, if you like a post, you can send a reply that everyone can see. When I checked Micro.blog’s public time line recently, the top post was a picture of a blooming dogwood tree, with the caption “Spring is coming!”

Even as it offers a familiar interface, though, everyone posting to Micro.blog does so on his or her own domain hosted on Micro.blog’s server or on their own personal server. Reece’s software acts as an aggregator, facilitating a sense of community and gathering users’ content so that it can be seen on a single screen. Users own what they write and can do whatever they want with it—including post it, simultaneously, to other competing aggregators. IndieWeb developers argue that this system—which they call posse, for “publish on your own site, syndicate elsewhere”—encourages competition and innovation while allowing users to vote with their feet.

A huge congratulations to Manton, Aaron, and Tantek for the publicity for both Micro.blog and the larger IndieWeb movement. Let’s keep working to make the internet a better, safer, more inclusive place.

 
 

Finally booked my travel for the 2019 IndieWeb Summit next month in Portland, OR. One of my favorite events of the year in one of my favorite cities to visit. – https://2019.indieweb.org/summit

 

Take Back Your Web by Tantek Çelik – Fantastic Talk!

Fantastic talk by Tantek Çelik about owning your identity on the web, and fighting back against the centralization of identity into harmful social networks like Facebook. Includes an inspiring introduction that sets context, and then an overview of the and related technologies like microformats2, webmention, micropub, microsub, and more. Must watch!

 

Why I'm supporting the IndieWeb (and you should too) - MarketGoo

Great post from Wences García of MarketGoo on the IndieWeb. I met Wences and the MarketGoo team a few years ago, and was so impressed with their culture, energy, and values. Its fantastic to see them sharing those values with the world in such a positive way.

It’s still too early to reach any conclusions, but I’m feeling better now that I control my own content and that I’ve found a place where to post my content freely and without fear.

But will be the Indieweb movement be the solution to save us all? The struggles I had at the beginning setting up my IndieWeb on a WordPress website have prevented me from thinking that way.

It’s clear that the IndieWeb needs to be more convenient, otherwise non-early adopters will not even get close to this movement.

I think Wences is right that with many building blocks now in place, it is important to start making the IndieWeb more user-friendly. Its no coincidence that Wences' web presence is now on Micro.blog, which is a much more approachable platform.

 

Yes: Looking forward to attending my third consecutive IndieWeb Summit in Portland, OR!

 

@benwerd Two thoughts: 1. Micro dot blog is a great, IndieWeb-friendly platform that is accessible to consumers. Not fully there yet, but a good model. 2. I like the idea of something like serverpilot.io, which separates the underlying infrastructure from the management.

 
 

All of the posts on my website going forward will now contain a snapshot of the current weather at my location. Hidden in the raw metadata, I’ll include detailed weather and location info.

 

Tracking My Movie, TV, and Podcast Activity

6 min read

As part of my continuing efforts to preserve and capture my memories, I’ve been spending some energy adding more capabilities to my website. I already capture photos, recipes, blog posts, status updates, and other more traditional types of content. In addition, I’ve been privately tracking my own location continuously for months now, including the ability to see some current details about my location and status. I also use the excellent OwnYourSwarm service from Aaron Parecki to record check-ins at specific locations on my site.

Last week, I realized that I was missing some data on my website that would add additional context when exploring my memories: my TV and movie watching history, and a record of what podcasts I listen to. As of today, I am now automatically tracking all of this data, and I’m happy to share a bit about how I made it happen.

Movies and TV

Let’s start with how I am tracking what movies and TV shows I watch. As it turns out, there is already a wonderful service out there for tracking this data called Trakt, which is a startup based out of San Diego. Trakt has done the hard part for me, with an extensive and complete database of movies and TV shows for me to pull from, and a host of great apps that use its powerful API to help users put data into their Trakt account. I am personally using the Watcht app for iOS to manually ad TV episodes and movies to my watch history on Trakt, and to show me a calendar of upcoming TV episodes for my favorite shows.

Trakt Logo

But, being an IndieWeb community member, I want to make sure that my memories don’t get lost in the event that Trakt goes away one day. In addition, I want to be able to see my TV and movie history in the context of the rest of my website’s content. So, I needed to find a way to automatically sync that data to my website.

At first, I thought about using the extremely capable Trakt API to periodically sync to my website, but then I noticed that Trakt Pro members get access to an Atom feed of their watch history. Working with a custom REST API takes a lot of effort, while integrating with a standard feed format is extremely easy. So, I happily paid for a Trakt Pro subscription!

I created a Python script which periodically parses my Trakt feed and then creates entries on my website for each movie and TV episode I watch. It only took me about an hour to put the whole thing together.

Sidebar: Automatic Tracking from Plex

Plex Logo

As you may already know, I have a great collection of digital movies and TV shows. I use the outstanding Plex Media Server to enable me to stream and sync content to all my devices. As Eddie, my co-host from Two Dads Talking, recently mused, tracking activity automatically is much more reliable than remembering to manually track activity. Trakt provides a Plex plugin that automatically syncs your Plex history to Trakt, and once I had that installed, a significant chunk of my activity is now automatically synced!

I still have to manually track content watched outside of Plex, like live TV from Hulu, and content consumed on Netflix, but it’s a good start.

Podcasts

I’m not only a podcaster with a microcast and a podcast, I’m also an avid podcast listener. I listen to podcasts on my daily commute, to relax after work, and to kill time on airplanes. Wouldn’t it be great to have that history tracked on my website as well? As I mentioned above, tracking that history automatically is greatly preferable to manually having to log every episode I listen to. With that in mind, I set out to see if I could capture my activity.

Overcast Logo

I use the wonderful Overcast podcast app for iOS. Overcast is created by Marco Arment, who is also a prolific podcaster. It’s a fantastic and pleasant app to use, and is perhaps my favorite iOS app ever. Overcast has a sync service and web frontend available for users at overcast.fm. Not only can you listen to podcasts in your web browser on overcast.fm, you can also export an extended OPML file that contains all details about your account, including a listing of all podcast episodes you’ve ever listened to. Bingo!

I whipped up a script that logs into my account at Overcast.fm, then downloads a copy of this OPML file, and uses it to sync my history to my website. It works a treat, but I will caution that Marco seems to be rate limiting that OPML export pretty aggressively. For the time being, I’ve limited my sync to once daily, and I’ve also contacted Marco to get his input on how I am using his service. In an ideal world, I’d love to see Marco add a standard RSS, Atom, or JSON Feed for Overcast paid subscribers similar to what Trakt has done for Trakt Pro users. In the meantime, I’ll be conservative about how often I sync and await a reply from Marco.

Why Track Activity?

You may be wondering why I want to track all of this information. Eddie and I briefly touched on the topic in the last episode of Two Dads Talking, but it really comes down to the fact that our memories are precious, and the more context I have when looking back on my life, the richer my appreciation will be for the life I’ve been blessed to live.

During the process of adding these new types of memories to my website, I also have added a monthly “recap” feature which has been one of my all time favorite enhancements. I like them so much, I’ve added links to the last twelve monthly summaries to my home page to surface them. My favorite examples of monthly summaries so far:

  • January 2018, which marked my departure from DreamHost, the beginning of a new chapter in my career, and my second viewing of my favorite musical of all time.
  • July 2018, which includes travel all over the globe, some progress on my Indiepaper project, and outdoor movies in my front yard with my kids.
  • November 2017, which includes a trip to Australia, the acquisition of the best car I’ve ever owned, and my son’s first ever NFL football game.

I’m delighted to continue enriching my database of memories, and really happy with the way my movie, TV, and podcast tracking is shaping up so far.

 

🎉 Huzzah! I now have my Trakt watch history publishing automatically to my website. I can mark an episode of a TV show or a movie as watched in Trakt, and a record will be created on my website! See – https://cleverdevil.io/2019/spider-man-into-the-spider-verse-2018

 
 

It’s increasingly clear that WordPress (steered by Automattic) isn’t particularly interested in blogging anymore. I agree that a solid, open source, turnkey solution for IndieWeb compatible personal websites is important. I also think Eddie is right that having several would be even better.

We have a great start in Known, which is what I use on my website, but we badly need more contributors. If you’re looking for a place to dive in and help solve this problem, I would highly encourage you to take a look at Known!

 

New Podcast: Two Dads Talking

2 min read

I am not ashamed to admit that I love podcasts. In the early 2000s, blogs were the hot thing: an open publishing medium that allowed people to exchange ideas, converse, and share. Since then, blogs have faded, as increasingly toxic social media walled gardens have moved people off the open web. It’s a shame, really. I’m hopeful that blogs will rise again, but it’s going to take time.

Podcasts, on the other hand, have only grown in popularity, and are still blissfully free of central control from creepy ad-driven social media giants. We are in the golden age of podcasting!

I’ve had a personal microcast for a while now, and I’ve been pretty undisciplined about publishing it. Still, it has been a fun exercise, and I plan to keep at it for years to come.

Today, however, I’m excited to announce a new podcast project: Two Dads Talking. TDT is a longer form podcast featuring myself and my co-host Eddie Hinkle. Eddie and I have known each other for a few years now through the IndieWeb community, and we’ve found that we both have a lot in common, but also a significant amount of differences. This podcast is an opportunity for us to get to know each other better, and for our listeners to join us in that discovery.

Eddie and I are both parents, though at very different life stages, and both are people of faith, and technologists. I’m really looking forward to getting to know Eddie better, and I hope you’ll all join us in our journey of Two Dads Talking.

To subscribe, visit the Two Dads Talking website, follow us on Micro.blog, or subscribe in your favorite podcast client.

 

For those of you that have been asking, for iOS is on the way, thanks to @EddieHinkle. Soon, you’ll be able to save content for later using natively on iOS. We are just waiting on Apple!

 

Replied to a post on seblog.nl :

Awesome post! I'd love to see some of your suggestions implemented within Together, specifically on the graph-based side. I continue to believe that the most critical problem to solve to drive Indieweb adoption is a unified experience for reading, interacting, and publishing. Pull requests are welcome! We definitely need more smart people working on Together :)

 

It really is pretty sad and shameful. Such a missed opportunity, too. I must say, I've been so impressed with how the Indieweb community has been explaining the need for CoCs on the wiki, including responses for common objections, questions, and more. https://indieweb.org/code-of-conduct-why

 

A huge congratulations to @GetSource, who I had the absolute pleasure of working with for 6+ years. Great hire for @GoDaddy. I hope you get a chance to work on features for @WordPress! Best of luck. I'm sure you'll knock it out of the park. 😀

https://twitter.com/GetSource/status/1047223678218383362

 

Thanks to @CultOfMac for their article on using Indiepaper with Micro.blog!

https://twitter.com/cultofmac/status/1031994389915152384