For anyone making use of my RSS feeds, I made some changes to simplify the template while making some content formatting changes (e.g. inlining the feature image at the start of longer articles/reviews). I’ve also limited the main feed to 25 posts instead of 50, which seemed excessive. While I tested with an offline reader, I can’t guarantee things won’t break, so if they do, please let me know!
Sabbatical accomplishment! I finally cut version 4.0.0 of this gem for integrating Jekyll with the Webmention.io service, which enables webmentions for static sites.
Well, I must confess when I first agreed to take over maintenance of this plugin I wasn’t prepared for just how burned out I’d gotten at the time, so while I did manage to get 3.3.7 out the door, I have to admit progress was far slower than I would’ve liked.
But, version 4.0.0 is finally done, and I’ve managed to integrate a bunch of changes I had queued up while dealing with a bunch of open issues in the tracker.
Here’s hoping I didn’t break anything horribly (I dogfood the main branch on my own blog but I’m not going to claim that exercises every corner of the codebase, and I’ve not begun the monumental effort to close out issue #29, so automated tests are still very much absent).
With that said, version 4.0.0 of this plugin brings along a couple of major new features, along with some more minor enhancements. While the gem behaviour and associated configuration should be backward compatible with the 3.x series, the changes are significant enough that I felt it best to bump the major version of the plugin so folks are less likely to experience a surprise upgrade.Continue reading...
I’m honestly very excited about the possibility of a revival of blogging and so forth, but I’d love to see the word “content” thrown into the dustbin. I don’t create “content”. I write (occasionally). And my writing isn’t just the grist for some corporate mill; my blog isn’t just a source of inventory for some ad network to monetize.
Finally released version 3.3.7 of the jekyll-webmention_io plugin, which updates some key dependencies, and staged a couple of major new features for the planned version 3.4.0! Progress!
Well, originally I was using bridgy-fed to stitch this blog directly into the fediverse, but after running into various challenges, I’m going to try bridgy instead and just syndicate to my personal Mastodon account. Let’s see how this goes!
An ActivityPub feed for a blog is absolutely doable, it just requires work. For example, a quick search turns up an ActivityPub plugin for Wordpress. Heck, micro.blog supports it natively. There’s also bots out there that’ll auto-syndicate posts from an RSS feed to a Mastodon account. Unfortunately it’s just not very widely available or adopted (yet!).
I figured it was about time to try and stitch my blog into the fediverse. Is this thing on?
Well, I’ve removed the ‘blog’ subdomain from my site, which was both seemingly simple and yet likely to break things in subtle and unexpected ways…
Given the recent purchase of Twitter I’m sure glad that all of my posts start on my blog and then syndicate elsewhere. It’s a lot easier to ignore Musk’s gyrations when you know you can drop Twitter any time you like…
Part two of two on single sourcing content, this time covering my CV, which starts as YAML and ends up as HTML, PDF, and even a Word doc.
As I mentioned in my previous post, my blog is often both a place to throw ideas out into the world, and a place to mess around with screwy ideas, and one of those ideas I’ve been messing around with is using Jekyll’s abilities as a static site generator to produce multiple outputs from a single source.
The first experiment in this area involved my cookbook, wherein I took a bunch of individual markdown files and crammed them together into something that pandoc can use to generate PDF and even EPUB outputs.
My second experiment in this area was with my CV. The challenge with something like a CV is that the layout requirements are pretty complex and don’t fit well with a basic template-and-markdown model. As a result, I ended up having to take a less orthodox approach to this project.Continue reading...
Part one of two on single sourcing content to produce multiple attractive outputs. In this case, a write-up about the creation of my personal cookbook!
One of the benefits of using a static site generator (in my case Jekyll) to build this website is that all the underlying content is stored in simple text files. Most of the page content itself is just markdown files with a YAML header block. The page layout is simple HTML templates using liquid macros. Formatting is SASS that’s transformed into vanilla CSS.
This has a few of benefits. First, the site is future-proofed–plain text means I can move to a different engine any time I want, as the content is stored in a format that’s easy to extract and transform. Second, the ecosystem of tools to handle text files generally, and YAML and markdown specifically, is enormous, which means I can lean on all that existing infrastructure to do interesting things.
In this post I’ll cover the first of two examples where I’ve taken advantage of these benefits to produce, not just this website, but beautiful PDFs, ebooks, and even Word documents, from the same source content.Continue reading...
Happy birthday 10th, Bridgy! If you’re reading this on Twitter, that’s because of this wonderful project. Thank you so much, Ryan, and everyone who’s contributed!
I used to use Goodreads for tracking/reviewing books I’ve read. Then Amazon bought them and I decided to move all that stuff to my own blog. This is how I did it!
So while it turns out I forgot I’d posted about this topic a while ago, it seemed worth revisiting and writing a focused post on how I’m book blogging.
Anyway, I don’t know about you, but I tend to have a remarkably poor memory for the books I’ve read. After I’ve finished a book or series, it doesn’t take long for the details to get washed out and for my thoughts to blur into vague recollections of what the book made me think and feel. It was for this reason that I started using Goodreads.
For me, Goodreads served a few useful functions. First, it gave me a place to track what I’m reading and, more importantly, what I’ve read. Second, it gave me a spot to jot down my thoughts about books so that, later, I could go back and read those notes and refresh my memory.
But that meant trapping all of that information in someone else’s silo, and I was never particularly comfortable with that. And when Amazon went and bought Goodreads, I basically stopped using the service, and as a result, stopped tracking my reading.
When I decided to reinvent my blog, I undertook the project with a central goal in mind: to take back control over my own data and content. To that end, book blogging was a perfect fit for this vision, and so I wanted to describe how I’ve leveraged approaches from the IndieWeb to solve this problem and scratch my own itch.Continue reading...
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