The State of the Amy

So, the latest in the world wide webs is that Electric Car Thomas Edison has taking hold of Twitter’s controls and pointed the nose straight for the ground. Everyone’s running around trying to communicate their evacuation points to all their friends before it gets to the point where communication is impossible ­— where everyone is going varies for any number of reasons. I’ve mostly settled on Pillowfort and Mastodon for now; both have their pros and cons, and honestly while I do hold my standards above what Facebook (and Insta) can reach, my standards for social media is fairly low.

I don’t have any real expectations of privacy, which means being on a Mastodon instance run by some stranger isn’t super worrying for me as long as I can block people if they’re assholes, and as long as the admin doesn’t go mad with power and block other instances I want to communicate with. As my main account is on, it should stay pretty okay aside from the growing pains as I believe it’s the largest instance at this point. I set up a secondary account for Emperor stuff on a small instance that someone randomly rolled into the replies of a Twitter mutual asking if there was a Star Wars mastodon instance yet, but there’s like 5 accounts there right now and I suspect half the fedverse feed for it is because of the off-instance follows I did immediately after creating the account. We’ll see in time if it grows and if this random stranger runs an okay instance or if I’ll need to shop for a different one to move to.

I was happy to find a WordPress plugin that will automagically post to Mastodon for me, so I just need to figure out something to automagically post to Pillowfort, and then my intermittent musings and bullshit are being pushed to all my socials again. I think I need to poke at diaspora and tumblr though, as I think both of those may have broken at some point. D* probably just needs to be logged in again, no idea about tumblr though, it might actually be working and I just look at it so infrequently I just can’t remember.

All that to say, the biggest disadvantage of Pillowfort at this point is also one of its charms — it’s still pretty small. It looked like they just dropped the rolling waitlist feature, which they chose to fast track because of Twitter going down like the fucking Hindenburg, but overall they’re not really supported by a lot of cross posting and integrations shit because they’ve been invite only until the rolling waitlist feature got finished. Invites aren’t horrific to come by, and I can usually give mine away when I post them on twitter, but not everyone was finding one when they wanted it and couldn’t/wouldn’t donate to get one. Hopefully they’ll be able to keep up with the growth okay. I like the way the site works even if it isn’t super active yet.

I’ve been pondering setting up a pi-hole, since I’ve got a raspi kicking around that I had been kinda using as a file server, but not really. It would be more helpful cutting off intrusive ads, and hopefully letting me ease off using NoScript. Don’t get me wrong, I love NoScript, but with how many fucking third-party websites some site use to get their shit working, and how hard it is to tell the ones that actually do a useful thing from the ones serving me ads and trying to track what I’m up to, it would be kinda nice to not have to lean as much on it. We’ll see if I find spoons to allocate to the project. Maybe over Turkey weekend, since I stay home the whole time to avoid the Capitalistic gluttony. We’ll see.

I need to pay with the new WP theme they dropped with the 6.1 release, and see if I like it better than whatever the fuck it is I’m using now. And I need to update my Socials menu so I have them all listed in one place again. Tempted to make a dedicated page and style it similar to that Link Tree shit. I want to say I read bad things about the link tree service, but fuck if I remember what, and if I’m already self hosting my own shit, why not spin up my own thing anyway?

Anyhow, if you’ve made it this far, I might as well tell you (remind you?) that I have both a red bubble: and an inprnt: where you can buy my art if you’re so inclined.


Raspberry Pi(rate) Box

First step was easy, grab the install image for the Pi via BitTorrent — it was well seeded, so I had that in no time flat. Next step was writing the image to the SD card, which I am ashamed to say was probably harder than it should have been; considering that I’ve been using one flavor of Linux or another as my daily driver OS for 13 years now, I shouldn’t have had such trouble figuring out how to use dd in the terminal window to write the image to the SD card (GUI makes me weak). My first attempt to fit the Pi into the case that was included in the starter kit made me afraid I was going to break it, but after setting it aside a minute, I did eventually figure out how it fitted into place. From there, everything else went pretty smoothly: put the sd card in, powered it up, and connected via wifi from my laptop. Followed the last few steps of setup via ssh, and now I have a default set up working.

I need to do some customization now: need a way to power it off without ssh for those times I’m using it on the go without a devices that I can access it via the shell to tell it to halt, and need to decide if a physical switch added to the case or a hidden and protected webpage will be a better solution. Want to customize the pages it serves to connected users for chat and file sharing. Want to set up bluetooth to connect to a speaker to play back audio. Need to be able to get it on home wifi network, to allow me to be connected to it for shell access while still having access to the internets for irc and forums to access help and tips. Maybe add a QR code sticker to the case that’ll direct people to the landing page since it doesn’t always auto-redirect on my phone (though it does on my laptop),

Overall, I’m pleased that I was able to do a thing and it works. I may buy a larger USB drive and a higher capacity external battery pack, but for now the 16GB drive I already had, and wasn’t using, is enough space, and I don’t expect to run it mobile very much yet, so I can use the existing battery pack I use to charge my phone on the go (ingress eats all the batteries!). Eventually I may upgrade it to a cooler case, or get a second SD card to set up another project.