1. now sports a composite homepage feed, meaning it’s not just notes which show up on the homepage, but also articles and music!

    Next up: breaking out various post types which I’ve been overloading notes to create, e.g. checkins, audio, photo, into their own things, remove the ability to create “named notes” (that was a stupid, yet well styled, idea) and figure out what to do with all the old notes which should actually be in other categories. Auto-detecting which templates to use for them should be easy enough, but I doubt I’ll be able to move them all into their new homes.

    All that old content will have to stay as notes for the purpose of URLs and querying, but in at least some cases can be styled better. Overall I’m comfortable with this, as it leaves history (and, more importantly, URLs) untouched without compromising the reading experience too much.

  2. Reflecting on 2013 with my . Biggest things personally have been making my second , moving to Iceland and meeting+working with all the great people over here. Lots of and progress, including a great indiewebcamp in September.

    Looking forward to 2014: more cooking, more indieweb progress, seeing more of Iceland, going to some gurdy festivals, improving hardware hacking abilities, connecting my gurdy and other devices to the web and each other.

  3. The other detail added to : phoning via SIP and a “Call Me” button. On desktop devices you’ll see it on my homepage in the Elsewhere section. Clicking it on a WebRTC-enabled browser will start an audio call with me if I’m logged into a SIP client.

    Next: using a Tropo app as a middleman for providing voicemail transcription and local numbers, improving/providing mobile UI.

  4. Notes vs Articles, again

    After deliberating a little about how to “do” a composite homepage feed, whether or not I should forget about having “notes”, “music” and “articles” and just merge them all, coupled with the fact that I already use notes for replies, I have reached a simple conclusion, of which this post is the first demonstration.

    /notes/ and what used to be “Notes” is now my de-facto dump for short-medium length chronological posts of all types. This covers notes, replies, checkins, short articles (basically named notes with more structure) and so on. Posts with a name live at /notes/DDD-name, those without names live at /notes/DDDSSS.

    /articles/ retains all content which lived there in the past. Going forward it might become more of a wiki, or a place for very long things like Data Export.

    /music/ will retain all it’s content, and be where I post standard musical notation tunes. Audio recordings of those tunes will be posted as audio posts with a link to the relevant tune.

    Hopefully these changes, along with improved templating (post-type-specific DOM templates here I come) will make finding, posting and reading posts on a much more pleasant experience.

  5. Sandeep Shetty: @BarnabyWalters Very cool. What's the use-case though? Also is this coming of the doctrine based indexer that you had?

    @sandeepshetty thanks! I’ve wanted to plot tag usage over time for a while now to see if there are any interesting patterns. I’m not using doctrine any more, in fact I’m not even using a SQL database for indexing until I really need one — data stored in yaml files, indexed by a csv file in ~210 lines of code — see also waterpigs.co.uk/notes/4TQNY2

    When I post a note, adds one to the week counter for each tag, then I have an endpoint which makes that data into an SVG.

  6. New in : latest 3 articles and location of last checkin/location post on the homepage — hopefully some useful/interesting context.

    Next: mobile-focused homepage design.

  7. @chloeweil great article and great work implementing ! Interested in your choice to use a database for performance reasons, was that prompted by actual experience or just the cited help thread? fwiw I’m having no performance problems storing >2000 notes in flat files with a CSV file index

  8. New in this version of :

    • Improved styling (still WIP, as always)
    • stream on homepage, currently just notes but will add other things too
    • content creation/editing UIs publicly viewable (take a peek!)
    • profile photo as the icon
    • complete code restructure, now using silex for HTTP routing
    • removed tonnes of nonsense framework code, replaced with small number of ≈200 line functional libraries. Clearer, easier to navigate and much more fun to work with
    • no more SQL databases — content is indexed using a custom built 209 LOC CSV index which is surprisingly speedy, and suits my needs perfectly
    • no more support for rendering content in many forms using content negotiation (HTML, JSON, ATOM etc.) — now only HTML+microformats2 representations of content are given
    • ATOM feed shimmed with microformats2 to ATOM converter
    • Pingbacks no longer natively accepted (though they are sent), using webmention.io to shim them into webmentions for easier handling

    The local maximum has been overcome, for now. There is still much to do.

  9. Had many basic software development lessons hammered in by personal experience over the last couple of years: hierarchy bad. side effects bad. many moving parts bad. undue complexity bad. inconsistency bad. SQL databases fragile. always be reducing.

    It’s amazing just how seductive complex, unproductive tools can be. Successfully overcome+abandoned:

    • Codeigniter
    • Doctrine ORM
    • Bootstrap
    • Backbone, Ember, Angular
    • Symfony Security component

    PHP remains productive and speedy (with composer, delightful dependency management), python nice with some irritations. jQuery useful when absolutely necessary, plain with small libraries loaded via requirejs handle most progressive enhancement concisely. node.js nice for some things, preferring go’s approach to async programming but still not much everyday need for it.

    Avoiding middlemen: LESS, SASS, Coffeescript. Unnecessary for most of my work, and more moving parts is bad.

    Now bothering me is the frameworky nonsense accumulating in . Need to cleanse.

  10. I just faked having a task queue for note posting tasks using Symfony HttpKernel::terminate() and it was the easiest thing ever.

    Instances or subclasses of HttpKernel have a terminate($request, $response) method which, if called in the front controller after $response->send(); triggers a kernel.terminate event on the app’s event dispatcher. Listeners attached to this event carry out their work after the content has been sent to the client, making it the perfect place to put time-consuming things like POSSE and webmention sending.

    Once you’ve created your new content and it’s ready to be sent to the client, create a new closure which carries out all the the time consuming stuff and attach it as a listener to your event dispatcher, like this:

    $dispatcher->addListener('kernel.terminate', function() use ($note) {
        $note = sendPosse($note);
        sendWebmentions($note);
        $note->save();
    }
    

    Then, provided you’re calling $kernel->terminate($req, $res); in index.php, your callback will get executed after the response has been sent to the client.

    If you’re not using HttpKernel and HttpFoundation, the exact same behaviour can of course be carried out in pure PHP — just let the client know you’ve finished sending content and execute code after that. Check out these resources to learn more about how to do this:

    Further ideas: if the time consuming tasks alter the content which will be shown in any way, set a header or something to let the client side know that async stuff is happening. It could then re-fetch the content after a few seconds and update it.


    Sure, this isn’t as elegant as a message queue. But as I showed, it’s super easy and portable, requiring the addition of three or four lines of code.

  11. So I got in-stream reply contexts showing — perhaps summaries of comments next? I like Facebook’s approach of showing the last 4, a total count and a “show me more” button, which could be implemented simply as a link to the note page initially.

    Reply context stream example: http://waterpigs.co.uk/notes?tagged=reply

    Still TODO: make the ↪ a link to the in-replied-to page, add the datetime to the title for that link, remove the in-reply-to info from the bottom of in-stream notes as it’s noise now

  12. UI : service which finds the average number of characters/words/lines in a note and automatically makes the “new note” box that size. Potential extension: Make it one line bigger/smaller to encourage longer/shorter writing.