Trying Gemini ♊
My history with Gopher and Gemini
I came to Gopher late, just as it was being "replaced" by the web but I check back fairly often and the concept and ideals always appealed to me. I always have lynx installed on my machines anyway, so every now and then I have a little cruise around and see what is happening.
Looking over Gopherspace in recent times I noticed increasing references to Gemini. So here I am to try it out. 😉
There is an appeal to the low barrier to entry provided by Gemlog blue. So thanks to those responsible for maintaining it. I could have set something up myself but before committing too heavily to Gemini, it is nice to have a free service already configured to 'test the waters' [✍ 2021-11-29: § Moving to 🐟flounder].
Extended history [✍ 2021-11-26]
I had actually thought about using Gopher (or now Gemini) for (b|ph|gem)logging in the past because of the (engineering) simplicity of those kinds of setups. Both in terms of generating content and should I want to self host. The downside for me would be the limited audience, due to the unusual protocol.
Historically, I always used to have a personal blog (firstly on My Opera and when that died I later used a paid blog hosting service that pushed Markdown for content creation). Using Markdown was nice because it meant that you could knock something up fast and easily and didn't feel pressured to spend a lot of time tweaking presentation. This kind of self imposed limitation appeals to me. You even see this to an extent in microblogging services like Twitter. The barrier to "write something" is small because you don't have to do much, just copy down your thoughts.
Archive.org copy of my blog on "My Opera"
Archive.org copy of my blog on Ghost.io
At some point though I just kind of let the last blog expire as I felt I was not using it enough, so I stopped paying. Since that time the kind of thoughts I might put into a 'blog' have been scattered on various services, much of it Github gists or Twitter threads but sometimes other places, e.g. I have a couple of things you might consider "blog posts" on my Strava account.
Twitter account (ruari): IT related
Twitter account (VelocipedeRider): cycling focused
Strava account (VelocipedeRider)
Github 'gists' (ruario)
The problem with this scatter approach, is that it is very hard to locate something you wrote before because it could be in any number of places. One of the things I liked about a blog is that I could either link to them or sometimes just copy and paste snippets of them when having conversations on similar topics elsewhere online.
So far on this Gemlog I am reposting stuff I have said on Twitter, Github and elsewhere but already I see some value. I am able to flesh out and reorganise my thoughts (Twitter threads are too limited sometimes) and now I have several 'articles' in one place (plus this intro post). I don't really imagine many people will find and read them because of the 'limited audience' on Gemini but there is still some value. Firstly, I started to notice that as much as anything posting them is 'for me', so that I can go back over my thinking, or clarify my thoughts in my head during the process of writing. I guess in much the same way people have kept diaries historically. Also it still gives me a place I can copy snippets of thoughts and ideas from and if I really wanted to link someone to an entire posting, I could always give them a link through a Gemini-to-web proxy service (since we are not at a stage where we could expect many people to have a Gemini client installed).
I am not sure that Gemlog blue is where I would want to host long term though. It could easily disappear in much the same way "My Opera" did. Again another appeal of Gemini is the simplicity of self hosting but I figured I would start here as a test/trial. I can always move stuff if I decide that this is something I want to continue going forward.
Moving to 🐟flounder [✍ 2021-11-29]
Whilst Gemlog blue seems to be a great service (for the limited time I was there) I already realised I wanted a bit more flexibility, and yet… I am still not ready to self host. So here I am and thanks Alex for providing me a new home. I owe you a ☕ or two.
🔙 Gemlog index
🔝 Capsule index