Turning my blog into a Fediverse server

Ganesha on Montrose

I’m adding this as a weekend project for myself.

Fedi.Tips – An Unofficial Guide to Mastodon and the Fediverse writes:

If you have a WordPress blog, you can turn it into a Fediverse server, which means people will be able to follow the blog and comment on it from Mastodon etc.

This is now possible for all kinds of WordPress blogs, including free blogs on wordpress.com, paid blogs on wordpress.com and blogs hosted elsewhere that are powered by WordPress software. The method you use to activate Fediverse compatibility depends on the type of blog you have, but they all work using the same technology.

(click here to continue reading WordPress: Turning your blog into a Fediverse server | Fedi.Tips – An Unofficial Guide to Mastodon and the Fediverse.)

So far, I’ve installed the ActivityPub plugin1 and attempted configuration. I’m not quite sure it is alive yet, but I have to stop for a few hours anyway to attend to other tasks. I’ll check back in and figure out what the final steps will be…

Footnotes:
  1. https://wordpress.org/plugins/activitypub/ []

Short Posts

Jawbone, Upper Yurtistan

I really should be less reluctant to write short posts. In the golden age of blogging, I’d think nothing of typing a sentence or two and publishing, these days I ruminate endlessly, and then publish nothing.

I am happy with Mastodon as a replacement for XTwitter aka Xitter, btw. I guess that is my current stand-in for pithy posts.

¯\_(ツ)_/¯

Using Mastodon Instead Of Twitter

Defunct Tweets

For a week now, I’ve been exploring the open source social media network #Mastodon1. Elon Musk is destroying the usefulness of , firing staff, whining, and seemingly proceeding without a thought-out plan. I haven’t deleted my Twitter accounts, yet, but I’ve started deleting DMs, downloaded my Twitter archive, deleted the official Twitter client from my iOS devices2, unfollowing accounts, blocking accounts more quickly, yada yada. 

I’ve had a Twitter account since 2007, and have been a heavy user of it ever since, for good or bad, I’m not sure. I learned a lot, but also wasted some moments that could have been more productively spent.  

 ¯\_(ツ)_/¯ 

Anyway, Mastodon seems like a viable replacement, at least so far. It isn’t the same as Twitter, and there are some things that I wish worked differently, but all in all, worth continuing to use. I’ve had more actual conversations at Mastodon than I have had recently at Twitter, perhaps because there are less people using Mastodon. Or because it is set up differently than Twitter.

Mastodon stats from yesterday:

6,444,017 accounts 


+5,384 in the last hour


+96,257 in the last day


+593,606 in the last week

If you want to follow me over there, use this link.

https://toot.community/@swanksalot

Also, if you can’t decide on which Instance3 to join, you can join the one I joined with this link.

https://toot.community/invite/f6xkp5zF

I gave a few dollars via Patreon to the site host, but you don’t have to if you don’t want to. The site host posted this yesterday:

Some #DevOps statistics for #tootcommunity: There are 70 devices hitting the server, each second. That’s 1.5 million requests for the last 6 hours, in which we sent out 67GB of data.

I’m also testing out posting from WordPress to Mastodon with a new plugin. We’ll see if it works once I publish this post!

Footnotes:
  1. after learning it wasn’t spelled Mastadon []
  2. keeping Twitterrific for the moment []
  3. Mastodon server []

Site Aesthetics

I’m not happy with the look of this site, but I never make the time to figure out how to customize it as I want. Sorry!

Also, the WordPress Block Editor is still a clunky mess, it doesn’t display well on my desktop (running an older MacOS), nor does it seem useful while using a “current” version of Safari.

Minor problems in the big scheme, of course, but means that I end up not posting much at my blog.

Leaning In To Listen

 

Jetpack Plugin Failure

Brief note: was meddling in my WordPress Dashboard today, and noticed that the Jetpack plugin wasn’t activated anymore. Tried to reinstall, and was told by WordPress that I couldn’t install Jetpack because the folder already exists. 

Jetpack 2022 02 23 at 2 38 49 PM

Hmmm…probably related to the Auto-Update feature, but who knows?

updated to add, logged in via FTP, deleted Jetpack, and reinstalled. No idea what caused the error, but doesn’t matter, chartreuse is my jam…

So Uh Changes Afoot

For the faithful and/or lazy who still get periodic email from this humble blog, I guess we’ll have to find other means of distribution, as Feedburner1 is deprecating certain features, including the email-of-new-posts feature.

Hotel Visitor

Upcoming changes to FeedBurner in July 2021 – FeedBurner Help:

Starting in July, we are transitioning FeedBurner onto a more stable, modern infrastructure. This will keep the product up and running for all users, but it also means that we will be turning down most non-core feed management features, including email subscriptions, at that time.

What FeedBurner users can expect

For many users, no action is required. All existing feeds will continue to serve uninterrupted, and you can continue to create new accounts and burn new feeds. Core feed management functionality will continue to be supported, such as the ability to change the URL, source feed, title, and podcast metadata of your feed. Basic analytics on feed requests and the ability to create enclosure tags for MP3 files will also continue to be supported.

So what is changing? We are turning down most non-core feed management features that help you optimize and publicize your feed, e.g. email subscriptions, Browser Friendly, and Password Protector.

I’m not sure what I’ll do to replace this functionality. Or when. I suspect there are other tools I can use, but I don’t know what they are, yet.

To be honest, I’m pleasantly surprised that Google is keeping Feedburner at all!

Cougle Comission - Fulton Market

Footnotes:

  1. now owned by Google []

WordPress and the Block Editor

Still A Virgin?

WordPress is really pressing their new-style editor, called the Block Editor. I can’t say I’m very enamored with it, at least in its current iteration. I find the Block Editor gets in my way more often than it is actually useful in creating a post.

Maybe I’m just used to using a 3rd party blogging software (namely, MarsEdit)? Maybe I need to use Block Editor more?

We’ll see.

Half of what he said meant something else, and the other half didn’t mean anything at all.

— Rosencrantz & Guildenstern Are Dead

Malware Strikes Again

Half of what he said meant something else, and the other half didn’t mean anything at all.

— Rosencrantz & Guildenstern Are Dead
Your Ballroom Days Are Over

My websites were flagged by my webhost as containing malware yesterday. After a little back and forth with them, I decided that I would fix the problem myself to save on the hard costs of hiring an expert. The sites in question1 had been hacked sometime in July, but the hacker’s payload was simply a proof of concept – the hacker created a file called lol.txt on each folder on the root level of my server.

Since I’ve been a customer of this particular webhost for nearly 15 years, there was a lot of extra folders left over from various projects that I didn’t need anyway. I took the time to back every single thing to my local hard drive, and then deleted thousands of files.

The malware was installed as a .php file in the directory /wp-includes in two different websites with a WordPress installation. I could have simply nuked all the WordPress files with the exception of files found in /wp-content but I was curious if I could find more traces of malware. I didn’t have anything else more pressing to accomplish today.

Eventually, I cleaned up all the miscellaneous debris left over from Blogger days, lo so many moons ago, and even delved into my Moveable Type installation from the Golden Era of Blogging. All clear, if clunky.

If you have a moment, take a gander at urbanseens.com or my photo blog to see if they are ok. My webhost gave me the all clear, and restored my sites to the internet.

Being told you have malware is like someone accusing you of having lice or a STD or something”

my brother quipped back:

what’s worse malware or herpes?”

Tell Me What You Want
Footnotes:
  1. not this one, but others []

Keeping the Streak Alive Barely

The current trend of gamification is to encourage behavior by keeping track of “streaks”. I’m not sure it means much, but I am amused by it.

For instance, WordPress tells me every day that I’ve posted for x number of days in a rom (currently 53 days)

This post is empty in content, but I’m posting it anyway to keep my streak alive.

Google Site Kit Installation Guide

Hallway Flopper

Via my webhost, pair, and a new Knowledge Base:

Google Site Kit is the much anticipated Google WordPress plugin. With this plugin, you can monitor your site’s visitors, see what pages they land on, how long they stay, and more!

Installing and Activating Google Site Kit WordPress Plugin

To install Google Site Kit on your WordPress site:

Open your WordPress Admin Interface
In the left sidebar, click Plugins

(click here to continue reading Google Site Kit Installation Guide | pair Knowledge Base.)

Why not? Maybe Google will help my site get slightly more traffic? In the golden age of blogging, I got 20,000 to 30,000 visits a day, with occasional spikes up to 70,000. That sort of traffic is long, long gone (didn’t help that I stopped posting frequently, and generally became a lazy blogger, also the industry changed, Facebook and Twitter became channels of communication, yadda yadda), perhaps I can recapture some of that magic?

I wonder if I should add back Google Ads? I never see them myself because I use a tracker blocker, but if they are irritating, it isn’t worth it for the amount of money it could bring in, especially if my daily traffic is less than 1,000 visitors a day.

Privacy Policy

Privacy God is pleased with our work

I used the built in template to create a privacy policy for this humble blog, even though I don’t really need it, I don’t think. If you are curious about what it says, the link is over to the upper right hand side of B12’s home page, or click here.

If you have any comments, I’d love to hear them.