Setting up WordPress for IndieWeb use by Chris AldrichChris Aldrich from Chris Aldrich | BoffoSocko
I spent some time this morning doing a dry run through setting up a suite of IndieWeb plugins on a fresh WordPress installation. Going off of a scant outline I talked for almost two hours describing IndieWeb functionality as I set it all up. Hopefully it will provide a useful guide to newcomers to t...

A really clear guide to setting up your WordPress for IndieWeb use. Available as a screencast and audio file. I’ve listened to about half the audio so far. I would love to have had this when I started adding plugins in a random fashion.

I just saw a provocative link from Aaron Davis, down with syndication, it was a reply on his site to an original post with that title by Ben Weirdmuller.

Arron has be a great example of an educator exploring the IndieWeb of which Ben is a major proponent.

Ben’s post is concerned with the idea of gaining more independence from the silos (twitter, Facebook and the like) and publishing more on his site. A lot of IndieWeb concepts involve publishing to your own site and sending links or repeating the posts across social media (like a link to this one will be auto posted to Twitter).

In his post Ben writes of leaving the silos behind completely. Just keeping things on his own site:

I think it might be more effective to move all the value away: publish on your own site, and use independent readers like Woodwind or Newsblur to consume content. Forget using social networks as the conduit. Let’s go full indie.

Ben mentions IndieWeb readers, that allow folk to create their own ‘syndication’ and reply, bookmark etc on their own site.

Nothing I’d disagree with there. I am quite shallow and enjoy likes, especially from Instagram coming a back to my blog via brid.gy but, in theory, I love the idea of full independence.

The provocation, to me came from the word Syndication. Before I’d heard of IndieWeb I’d been involved in DS106. This means that for me syndication means something different than a silo. To me a syndication is something set up for a group, long or short term that can be completely separate from any silos. DS106, and many other educational syndications uses a WordPress blog to syndicate content from other sites. Alan Levine, @cogdog, has set up many examples of this sort of thing.

When I was involved in the migration of Glow Blogs one of the features I managed to get included was a syndication plugin. This took quite a lot of insistence on my part, but the University of Dundee and Derek Robinson have certainly made that worthwhile with EduShare which syndicates trainee teacher reflections. 1

These non-silo syndications are, if not a gateway drug to the IndieWeb, a great way to get people considering how and where they publish to the web and how community could be built.

These syndications can be used for long running or short projects 2, the participants don’t need the expertise beyond setting up a blog. You can participate in different communities from the same blog.

The great thing about a syndication is that the content doesn’t go away if the syndication does. Any discussion can take place on the participating sites. All the hub does is make it easy to read and make connections. Micro.blog reminds me of this in many ways, although the participants are not grouped round a class or topic.

Now I am thinking I should do a lot more to publicise the possibilities for syndication in Glow Blogs.

Featured image: Silos | Darko Pevec | Flickr Creative Commons — Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 2.0 Generic — CC BY-NC-ND 2.0.

  1. The UoD is by far the biggest and best example of syndication in Glow Blogs. I’ve used it for a couple of smaller examples but it is IMO one of the features of Glow that could be used much more widely.
  2. A example of a short aggregation I organised on Glow Blogs Blogging Bootcamp #2 | Get your blogs up and running Autumn 2015

AudioBoom is closing its free tier:

If you take no action, then after 2nd October 2017, you will no longer be able to upload new content and your account will become private. We will continue to enable distribution of your existing content for a period of a month so all your RSS feeds and web embeds will continue to work for that period. If you choose to move to another podcast provider, let us know by emailing us at support@audioboom.com and we will redirect your RSS feeds for you. We’ll need at least 5 working days to comply with your request. After 36 months from 30th August 2017, your account will be deleted (including your old podcasts and your RSS feeds, so we recommend that you arrange for redirection of your RSS feeds, download your old podcasts and back them up elsewhere, before that period expires.

from: Subscription Changes

Which is depressing news for me and for Edutalk. I have 50 odd boos which range over field recording, audio recorded for Edutalk and some microcast type posts. Edutalk has had several hundred contributions from many different people over the years.

The situation at Edutalk is more worrying. I could pay $9.99 a month to keep my own account alive. But Edutalk has had contributions from many different people, we could not expect them to pay up for the privilege of having their content syndicated onto Edutalk.

AudioBoom did not provide any export that would help with importing into WordPress (or anything else). This differs from the posterous closedown which did give a WordPress export option.

We do have a while to sort this out. There is a month until the accounts become private.

AudioBoom does have an API, and we used it before.

I am not intending to rush, so this is the plan.

  1. Download the information about the posts using the API
  2. Download all the mp3s by parsing the JSON the api provides.
  3. Delete all the posts on edutalk that have been syndicated from AudioBoom.
  4. Upload all the mp3s
  5. Create posts that embed all these mp3s with the matching titles and descriptions etc.

Today I managed to download the json files and the mp3 I used AppleScript as I find it easier to get stuff done with that than pure shell scripting.

Thank goodness for the JSON helper for AppleScript which worked a treat.

I’ve put the script here:

in case anyone is interested.

I had to run it 10 times, I guess I could have just made a loop but as I ended up downloading 890 mp3 for a total of 2.6 GB batches of 100 files at a time seemed like a good idea.

I am a wee bit worried that there are 2186 posts syndicated from audioboo on the Edutalk site, but there does seem to be a lot of duplication presumably caused by FeedWordPress.

Next Steps

I’ve now got all of the data and the mp3 files I can get.

I know how to post to WordPress from AppleScript, but I’ve discovered a couple of hurdles. I don’t seem to be able to add an enclosure with AppleScript and I can’t see how to ad multiple tags to a post.

The first is probably not a problem. These posts are all so old that they will not feature in our RSS feed. I would like to include all of the tags. I may end up creating a WordPress export file or try one of the csv import plugins. There is now not such a rush. I can test these approaches on this blog with my own boos.

I guess the main lesson to be learnt here is about the temporary nature of the free layer of the web. The AudioBoo app and service were wonderful in their day but reliance on free services costs.

The featured images is a gif captured with Licecap, of a mp3 download.

I just started using ownyourgram which grabs your photos from Instagram and posts them to your own site with some #Indieweb magic. No photo turned up. Google got me editing theme’s function.php ( I don’t like) & sorted. Need to figure out to look better on blog and organise.

Google says it can’t trust our self-hosted AMP pages enough to pre-render them. But they ask for a lot of trust from us. We’re supposed to trust Google to cache and host copies of our pages. We’re supposed to trust Google to provide some mechanism to users to get at the original canonical URL. I’d like to see trust work both ways.

Source: Adactio: Journal—In AMP we trust

Reading above my pay grade again.

More about Google’s AMP stuff here: Google AMP is good for mobile web users – but what about publishers? | Media | The Guardian

One of the things it does is present your content quickly without all the javascript that slows pages down, but it also seems to hijack the ULR and give the material a google one.

Given Schools should teach pupils how to spot ‘fake news’ – BBC News, it might make understanding and evaluating content even harder.