Micro Matt

Micro thoughts and mini posts.

Some priorities for new Write.as development at the moment:

Better fediverse integration. It’s time to make the platform more social, and of course we’ll do it with ActivityPub. ”Likes” you get from the fediverse show up on Write.as now (I still need to announce this), and replies will be next.

Importing posts. Other publishing platforms are doing some bad things right now, and I see many people looking for alternatives like Write.as. We’ll start with importing from Substack, then move on to support for other platforms.

Draft posts. Writers have had to work around the shortcomings of Anonymous posts here (called “Drafts” on WriteFreely) for too long, so it’s time to implement true drafts, with the ability to see posts and schedule them before finally publishing. This will also support migration from other platforms, and retain any imported drafts.

#fediverse #ActivityPub #WriteAs #WriteFreely #writeasdev

Thoughts? Discuss...

Looking for apartments today; stressful. I have to meet requirements, I have to gather documents, I have to schedule and run around to viewings. Thought about moving to the city but I want to stay in the neighborhood — I like the people here. Really I just need to be by the train.

Last night I wrote with the writing group — I hadn't been in three weeks. The brief spring weather last week turned back into winter, and there was a fire out back, which I helped keep lit.

Tonight is our monthly open mic. Last time I read a story about a hike; this month I'll just listen. It's always good inspiration.


Thoughts? Discuss...

I haven’t written here lately, for no one particular reason, but I’d like to start it up again.

I’ve been keeping busy — still meeting with friends every week to write, still going on photowalks, still taking an occasional day off to do nothing in particular. I’m in a relationship now; I’ve started working on some art projects with friends; I’m more focused with Write.as; I’ve gone out of the country twice in the past few months, and out of the city a handful of times.

It’s cold here and there’s still snow on the ground, which makes me happy. These days I’m not pursuing happiness as much as realizing all the things I have in my life that make me happy, from this city to the people around me.

Will write more soon.

Thoughts? Discuss...

Deployed a caching layer for Write.as blogs that are on a subdomain (custom or *.writeas.com), like this one. This should vastly speed things up for these sites, and eliminate a ton of load on the database.

So far things look good, but I want to make extra sure we're still good with the fediverse before deploying it more widely. If you see any weirdness with this post, let me know @matt@writing.exchange.

Thoughts? Discuss...

Took a trip to Virginia for the holiday weekend. It was nice to get out of the city; it was good for resetting my mind, and I came back home feeling a little more on top of things, mentally.

There are always a million things on my mind at once, and a million things to do. But one of my favorites is of an evolution of WriteFreely — a hyper-local, sort of R&D project to make the software more friendly for the people I know in person; that would be more suited to everyday users, less generically appealing, and made for “feelings.” Whatever I learn would make it back into the main project.

Another thought is inspired by Twitter's continuing unraveling, and recent censorship of Substack and competing platforms like Mastodon — I'd like to open up free accounts on Write.as again.

Just thoughts for now.

Thoughts? Discuss...

Slowly finding motivation — it involves setting goals. Fame and fortune are boring; I can’t wake up for “growth.” I tried in 2019-20 and it didn’t make me happy. Now I get out of bed and joke with my friends. I spend a whole afternoon setting up an online forum for my offline photography group. I say I’ll shoot a one-night art event for free this week. I log into my business inbox and I sigh, even as I email real-live people; so separated by the gaping void between us — business serves customer, customer pays business.

So I set a goal. Make my open source software more widely known and used. Do it for the next 10 years and see what happens. Don’t change it that much in that time, just make it better at that one thing it does, and see what happens. Keep the traditions of the old and open web. Don’t really shout about it, just calmly tell those who wander by and wonder. Hang with the curious ones that like to give in return.

I don’t know the total addressable market of my business. There’s no market share percentage to aim for. I don’t need to make the #1 best blogging newsletter publishing platform on the internet. I just want some more people to see it, and for them to tell others about it ‘cause they like it. Maybe someone will throw some money at me along the way. That will do the trick. That’s it, that’s the goal.

#business #motivation

Thoughts? Discuss...

Recently read a tweet pondering that maybe most software we've built could just be a “temporary apparition,” instead of needing to be long-lived societal infrastructure. I find that idea incredibly freeing, and the clearest lens to see the tech world through right now, as someone building it.

What if we took social media a little less seriously — even the “better” solutions like the #fediverse? What if we didn't worry about “changing the world” with some new startup idea, and instead improved life for a few people? What if we just made cool shit online that could help pay our bills and then we do something new when that gets old? What if we forgot the 1990s-2020s delusion that the information superhighway was going to elevate humanity to some brand new plane above our own humanity?

I think we'd arrive at viewing the internet mostly as a fun, silly little thing we use sometimes — and that, like TV, it is useful but only ever parasocial. That it can never replace a meal with friends and family, a real-life community, making love, a face-to-face conversation, or hearing the birds outside your window. Maybe we could continue building cool digital things without all the pressures of being the best, conquering the world, getting it absolutely perfect for everyone, everywhere in the world.

Thoughts? Discuss...

Here’s the workshop I’ll be teaching this Saturday at Photodom in Brooklyn, on how to create a website / portfolio without social media. Really looking forward to it, and hopefully it’ll be the first of many to come.

Portfolio Workshop, October 15th at 1-3pm, Photodom Studios, 1717 Broadway, No. 205

Thoughts? Discuss...

I’ve started settling back into shooting black & white. Right now, Kodak Tri-X 400 is most consistently giving me the look I want.

This one was shot on Lomography Lady Grey 400, which I also like a lot:

#photography #film

Thoughts? Discuss...

Looks like the workshop I wanted to start is moving forward! I talked to the camera shop where I get all my film developed about doing it there, and they liked the idea. Will be talking through the details on Monday, and doing the first one in mid-October if all works out.

Thoughts? Discuss...

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