When I was thinking about what to do with this site I spent some time looking around the IndieWeb Webring. I’d pick a site and then use the Webring link to randomly move to the next site. You can also view it as a directory listing. You can also explore sites not in the Webring with this handy site.
IndieWeb, in case you’re not familiar, is the idea that you should own everything you post on the web.
Your content is yours. When you post something on the web, it should belong to you, not a corporation. Too many companies have gone out of business and lost all of their users’ data. By joining the IndieWeb, your content stays yours and in your control.IndieWeb.org
Generally you start by publishing your content on your site. From there you can syndicate it to other sites such as Twitter, Medium, etc., rather than the other way around. You can learn more about tagging your content and some of the other nifty IndieWeb features at the IndieWeb site. But even if you didn’t want to tag your content, the most basic principle is to publish on your own site. (Note: I revised this paragraph for clarity).
Back to the Webring. I found no shortage of inspiration and delight! In a hustle culture, Thought Leader infested online world it’s helpful to find like-minded people carving out their own odd, fun little spaces. In the immortal words of Kevin Gnapoor, Math Enthusiast / Bad-Ass M.C., don’t let the haters stop you from doing your thang.
Here are a few of the lovely pockets of the web I randomly encountered. I’ll be looking around the directory as well, and you should too! Who knows, I may even add the Junk Drawer.
Oatmeal – A digital pillow fort
I love the design of this site, especially in dark mode. The staggered content card listing lends itself well to the different content types. I also like the “permalink” inclusion in the card, which makes it possible to either not have a headline or use the headline for something other than a link to the post.
One such usage are the “In reply to” posts where the link goes to the original source, which sometimes is his own content. On my first visit to his site I read the That one time Buffy the Vampire Slayer maybe saved my life? post, and was happy to read “In the reply to” update.
One idea I may adopt around here is the Link Log concept. You can can count this post as the first-of-type! Although I’m going to call it Link Roundup.
The definition of straightforward. The intro (“Hi, this is @davidfq’s website. Here you’ll find a mix of personal memories, opinions, and notes about technology and design.”) is followed by a list of links.
There are two categories: Blog and Memories. Memories are photos, which are mostly travel related. A photo section that’s about memories is a nice approach, but his photos are also well composed.
If you’d like to be transported to the 90s, this is the place for you! Be sure to visit the original version as well. I suddenly feel like I have to get off the internet because someone needs to use the phone. An enjoyable blast from the past.
A harmonious color palette that’s easy on the eyes with concise organization. “my site is inspired by the web that once was. where personal sites and the free expression they brought with them were the norm. the internet was one big canvas.”
Took a peak under the hood and if I had to guess I’d say it’s straight up vanilla HTML and CSS, which gets a big thumbs up from me regardless of content or design. Another area of interest is that she has two concurrent journals (Update: It looks like the Moon and Sun journals no longer exist).
Moon has a lot more content, or at least it did when I looked!
Another awesome throwback vibe, I especially love the 88px wide badges, including an Eleventy badge! Be sure click around and check out areas like the Text Wall (I added a greeting), the console (type “cat”), and the photography portfolio (more cats). Good fun all around.
Marty McGuire’s site
Wait, did you say you like cats? If videos of floofy cats doing cute floofy cat things is of interest, you will enjoy this site. Please note there is a lot of motion on this site!
Another nice feature is that the individual photo posts include check-ins where appropriate. I’m a little surprised this place is still around! Aside: one of my favorite neighborhood blogs shared some interesting history of the building.
Oh Hello Ana
Saving one of the best for last! I already knew about Ana’s site and follow via RSS and Twitter, so I was not surprised to happen upon it in the Webring.
Lovely illustrations compliment the site structure, and the graph paper background ties the “jottings” concept together neatly. A few of the sections are in progress (can’t wait to see what’s in Cursed Thoughts!) but the Bookmarks, Blogroll, and Guestbook are all active as well as Posts. A charming must-visit in your travails through the IndieWeb!
I love seeing how people decide to share parts of their lives, or digital ephemera. How they have fun with, or just use the medium. It’s especially useful as I think about what to do here.
It’s similar to the appeal of a Uses page that lists all the equipment, software and general accoutrements around Making Digital Stuff. I’m moderately interested in your Uses page. I’m much more interested in what you make with all the stuff on your Uses page.
Whether you’re looking for inspiration, or maybe just need a break from doomscrolling, wandering around the IndieWeb for a bit can be quite enjoyable.