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frugal technology, simple living and guerrilla large-appliance repair

Regular blog here, 'microblog' there

Many of my traditional blog post live on this site, but a great majority of my social-style posts can be found on my much-busier microbloging site at updates.passthejoe.net. It's busier because my BlogPoster "microblogging" script generates short, Twitter-style posts from the Linux or Windows (or anywhere you can run Ruby with too many Gems) command line, uploads them to the web server and send them out on my Twitter and Mastodon feeds.

I used to post to this blog via scripts and Unix/Linux utilities (curl and Unison) that helped me mirror the files locally and on the server. Since this site recently moved hosts, none of that is set up. I'm just using SFTP and SSH to write posts and manage the site.

Disqus comments are not live just yet because I'm not sure about what I'm going to do for the domain on this site. I'll probably restore the old domain at first just to have some continuity, but for now I like using the "free" domain from this site's new host, NearlyFreeSpeech.net.

Tue, 25 Feb 2014

If this appears on Twitter an hour after my last Tweet, it works.

If you see a link to this post on Twitter an hour after my last Tweet, my IFTTT-Buffer timed blog RSS-to-social setup is working.

Using Buffer and If This Then That to automate RSS into Twitter at regular intervals

Sure it's better to script everything locally, and I bet that piping RSS to social media at regular intervals is more than scriptable, I started using Buffer a week or so ago to spread out my Twitter posts in the event that I do a bunch of them at once.

Mind you, this hasn't yet happened. But it could. And I'm testing the service for my day job.

For my personal sites, I've been using dlvr.it to automatically feed blog RSS to Twitter (and occasionally Facebook). But while dlvr.it theoretically CAN dribble out posts at timed intervals with it's new (to me) "Q" feature, use of RSS with Q requires a paid subscript to dlvr.it. Again, for the day job this is something we might consider (if anybody but me was a dlvr.it fan), but I'm not that crazy about the paid options.

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Wed, 29 Jan 2014

There a 'fediverse' out there waiting for you

I feel for Evan Prodromou, creator of Pump.io and Status.net before that -- both software platforms for his vitally important Identi.ca social network, which started as a free, open Twitter-like service when one was badly needed in 2008-9.

Running Identi.ca under Status.net required a whole lot of resources, and Evan was doing it for nothing (I think). Then he wanted to change everything about the software and hardware running the identi.ca service and did. So Identi.ca lives. But Identi.ca is not as feature-rich as it was when Status.net was the software behind it.

What's missing from the Pump.io version of Identi.ca for me are a search function and the tags and groups features of the original Identi.ca. I also miss being able to access Identi.ca in most mobile clients, especially Mustard. The new Pump-powered Puma -- with development led by Macno, the same developer who created Mustard -- is coming along, as is the desktop Pumpa client. Like Pump.io itself, neither client is terribly feature-rich at this point.

But what I miss most is the community of the original Identi.ca. I'm not sure how much of that community has scattered since Pump.io, but it sure looks like a lot.

Things that are great about the Pump.io-powered Identi.ca are the ability to do so much more in posts -- more than you can do with Twitter and the original Status.net-powered Identi.ca. But I've found that short Twitter-like posts work for me. It's all about the people ...

I like pump.io's Identi.ca, and I really like Evan. He's given a lot to the community in the form of the Identi.ca service itself and both of its platforms (Status.net and Pump.io).

Today I got a nudge from somebody (ironically via Google Plus) that there's a big #fediverse movement out there centered around the Status.net software.

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Fri, 08 Nov 2013

Google knows how to get you

I don't get on Google+ all that often. But I was going through my mail today and got a notice about a post from a few weeks ago. I went to it and made a comment.

Further down in my G+-related mail, Google offered me this personalized URL: https://plus.google.com/+StevenRosenberg. In true land-grab fashion, I took it.

Will this make me more likely to use Google+? It certainly won't make me less likely to do so.

Mon, 15 Jul 2013

From the Guardian: We want privacy from the government, but we're open-freaking books on social media

An interesting piece from Lindsey Bever of the Guardian: We want privacy from the government, but we're an open book on social media: There's outrage about the NSA's 'spying' on citizens, but many of us are willing to share our personal lives and locations daily

The short version: Corporations know your every move because you're letting them track you. It's more like science-fiction-come-true than not.

Personally I don't let Twitter track my movements (though the Android app does ask), and I don't allow tracking in most any app I use on my phone.

But Google probably knows where I am due to data being sent from the Android device itself. We clearly need a way of anonimizing our web activity, especially from mobile devices that have tracking via GPS and cell towers pretty much baked into their hardware and firmware.

Wed, 20 Feb 2013

This social-media post was generated out of my #ode blog http://bit.ly/Vx4RHw

I'm experimenting with a feed out of this Ode site whose sole purpose is to originate and archive my posts to social-media services such as Twitter.

Ideally I will be pointing the RSS of a specific subset of posts either at Twitter directly, or at http://dlvr.it, and the only things I will be posting to social networks will both originate and live here.

This is a "push" system that doesn't gather any responses to these social-media postings, but I could always gather and repeat that history here, provide a link to same, or just forget about it and be happy having my "original" posts contained within this portion of my Ode blog.

Later: The super long URL in the header ran right out of the box, so I used bit.ly to shorten it.

The link referenced in the title is the URL to this very entry: http://stevenrosenberg.net/blog/social/posts/2013_0220_twitter_out_of_ode

Even later: problems with this method include: The link doesn't track from the blog to Twitter. Instead the Twitter post goes back to this blog entry. That might not be so bad -- Any link I want can be at the top of the blog post, and the reader can go from Twitter, back here, then to the outbound link.

But it would be better to at least have the flexibility of originating a Twitter post with a unique link and pushing that to the social-networking service rather than a link to a blog post. There is probably some way to do this with the Twitter API (and maybe even the Twitter-related Perl modules). Something to think about.

Sat, 15 Sep 2012

Evgeni Golov: Why I hope Twitter will die with the new API

An interesting post from Evgeni Golov: Why I hope Twitter will die with the new API.

Twitter built its following on a great deal more openness and flexibility than it wants to provide now. And thus Twitter is closing things up in such a way as to make sure more users access the service through Twitter-controlled sources and see more Twitter-controlled marketing.

Evgeni hopes it'll backfire. I'm with him.

Sat, 11 Aug 2012

Chris Hall of FOSS Force: Occupy Diaspora

FOSS Force's Chris Hall has a nice post on how he returned to the open-source, not-for-profit (as far as I know) Diaspora social network to find it more populated than the last time he signed in. He's now actively using Diaspora and inviting his Facebook friends to the non-explotative alternative.

Mon, 11 Jun 2012

How do you feel about social-networking posts originating as blog-post titles?

Social networking -- the giving and the taking

I know it's easy. You pick up your smartphone. You click the Twitter icon (or Facebook, if that's your poison).

Then you lay it out in 140- (or 500-odd) character bursts. Or you talk about the sandwich you're eating.

There's nothing wrong with that. Except that your words now live on some social network. Not on your own hard drive or server. Not even on a WordPress.com blog from which you can extract every post to archive and reuse as you please.

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