µblog - archive for 2022-04

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Saturday, 30 April 2022

A Make trick

The way this blog works is by running a Perl script with a big ole Markdown text as input. I wanted to keep my files logically separate, including the big dump of Tweets I’ve exported. So I wanted to do the following:

My first attempt looked like this

content.in: *.md
	cat *.md >> content.in

But that of course just grew content.in every time it was run. I did try a rm content.in as a first command, but that felt inelegant.

With the help of @gwozniak in lobste.rs chat, I came up with this instead:

content.in: *.md
	cat $^ > $@

Nice, simple, and inscrutable. Make at its best.

A good analogy to Ockham’s Razor is the pseudo-Marxist:

if something seems illogical, it’s that way because it makes people money

For example: content that used to be on blogs is now on YouTube, which is less convenient, harder to search, and generally uses more bandwidth. Why don’t people blog anymore? Because they earn more money producing video content.

Friday, 29 April 2022

in-band data

Coming up hard against the realization that a fortune-style file format is pretty limiting.

So the format of this particular blog is a big file in fortune file format:

YYYY-MM-DD today's title 
More content
Even more content

(I’ve had to escape the percent signs to avoid the blog engine to read them as delimiters.)

So the problem with this (and this is my problem) is that I add a sequential ID to every piece of content at generation time for permalink purposes.This means that if I mess up and add a piece of content above another, it will get that ID instead.

It’s not the biggest problem in the world, but ideally every piece of content would have an immutable ID, ideally a timestamp, but that would complicate the authoring.

But at that point, you might as well just use a database. There’s an inherent limitation in keeping too much metadata in plain-text files.

Some people on Hackernews are touting a new “troll-free” app for having “conversations”. One featured user is a gentleman in his late 20s, wearing a bowtie and repping an online mag that hosts an article by Curtis Yarvin about El*n M*sk and Twitter.

Yeah, I think I’ll pass.

Thursday, 28 April 2022

Announcing my microblog

I’ve really enjoyed venting on gemini, but mostly because it’s really quick and easy to get something “out there”. But gemini itself is pretty limiting both in formatting and reach, and the recent Twitter kerfuffle got me interested in hosting my own quick-to-post solution.

So I googled a bit and found Tumblelog by John Bokma, which looked like it would tick the boxes I wanted:

While I found the general idea great, I didn’t need all the bells and whistles, so I ripped out the parts that dealt with HTML generation and shifted that to a Template-based solution.

It’s still rough around the edges - I need to figure out a better stylesheet, and I need to add feed support, but so far it’s a lot of fun and I hope I can start using it shorter stuff.

Update 2022-05-05: feeds and stylesheet added. Source is at Github.

I wonder if TwElon will restrict the use of 3rd party clients on Twitter. It all depends on if he needs to wring more money out of the site.

This microblog project is coming along quite nicely. I’ve managed to extract my old tweets so I’ll backfill this with them.

It would be too funny if the Twitter deal fell through and Elon didn’t swoop in like the great White hope his awful fans claim him to be.

JSON feed specs


Validation link

So much US history makes more sense when you consider it as a massive reaction against black people.

Wednesday, 27 April 2022

Watch out NYRB, the substackers are coming for you


I like free speech so much I’ve decided to buy it


🤬 Fucking Twitter - or rather, fucking Elon

This is depressing as heck. I am convinced Twitter will become even worse, very quickly. The global right is stirring and will use Twitter in its war against decency.

I’m probably not gonna be directly affected because I’m a cis white male, but I really feel bad for “designated targets” already having a tough time there. And I really don’t want to continue to feed the beast.

Even if people move on to somewhere else, a sort of meta-community will be fractured, and the bad guys have won another battle.

tweets for 2022-04-25

“Oh no the community I love has been purchased by a coke-addled rich person!”

Twitter 2022? Try #freenode 2021

tweets for 2022-04-23

Rewatching “E.R.”. Man those people loved to intubate



There’s an adage that crops up a lot in science fiction circles: a dystopia is a future or alternate world in which things that are happening right now happen to white people. It’s reductive, and not a little bit mean, but there’s a lot of truth to it.

See also

tweets for 2022-04-15

Julmust, påskmust, Elon Must

tweets for 2022-04-13

you have to wonder if the people running Russia’s troll forces are pissed their colleagues in the army has fucked everything up

tweets for 2022-04-12

Standard procedure when a previously unknown domain appears on the HN frontpage is to do some basic research to find what corner of the IDW it inhabits

Eliza is my waifu

tweets for 2022-04-07

You gotta wonder if at some point Musk’s cosplay as edgy memelord is gonna negatively impact the sales of the products his companies make

I’ve had a smartphone for more than a decade and I finally lost my cracked screen virginity

tweets for 2022-04-05

Nice to get an evil face on a normally faceless evil corporation


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