Homebrew Website Club Berlin #5 on 5 Apr 2017

The March 22 edition of the Berlin Homebrew Website Club was a rather private circle, with just three of us engaging in free-form discussions around tracking and privacy, WordPress and other CMSs, and the topic of enabling donations or micropayments on personal websites.

The upcoming event on April 4 will see a slightly different format, to test out a more structured approach:

  • 18:30-19:00 Warm-up: Gathering the crowd, catching up, getting to know each other
  • 19:00 Show-and-tell: What are you currently working on? What is the current pain point on your site? (These can be related to the Indieweb technology stack or not, and it is of course optional; to join us it is not necessary – though encouraged – to present anything.)
  • After: Continuing the conversations, helping each other out, or just having another drink
Past event

Homebrew Website Club Berlin

Salon Schmück, Skalitzer Str. 80, Berlin, Germany (Kreuzberg, U1 Schlesisches Tor)

Homebrew Website Club is a bi-weekly meetup of people passionate about or interested in creating, improving, building, designing their own website, in the same structure as the classic Homebrew Computer Club meetings.

RSVP on the IndieWeb.org wiki (if you have an Indieweb site), in the comments below, or just join us ex tempore.

Everybody is welcome! Just look for the IndieWebCamp sign on our table and say “Hallo”.

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  • Comment by Florian Weil:

    A list of topics I am interested in for this event:

    - Caddy Webserver with integrated SSL certificate management | https://caddyserver.com/
    - Streisand Webserver Toolbox against Censorship and how cand IndieWeb cand work with it | https://github.com/jlund/streisand
    - New Internet Privacy regulation in the US
    - Talking about Ethics in WebDesign and WebDev, for instance https://ethicalweb.org/ | http://fairwebservices.org/ | https://ind.ie/ethical-design/ | https://criticalengineering.org | http://tiny.cc/mqe8jy | https://resilientwebdesign.com
    Interesting Event ins Berlin, for instance https://datensummit.de/


  • We started this HWC by discussing future plans for our meetup, especially how to promote it and how to find a better location. (Afterwards, Florian created a group at meetup.com) I've also been building a web site for HWC – mostly for learning CSS Flexbox and Grid layouts, but maybe we’ll turn it into an actual page.

    Florian had brought a bunch of interesting links:

    The Social Design of Technical Systems: Building technologies for communities

    This led back to a discussion from 2 weeks before, where we had talked about about tracking and respecting user requests like the Do-Not-Track-header. Joel mentioned the CommonTerms project, which proposes icons for typical clauses in Terms and Conditions.
    He showed how on one of his web pages, he does not just disable tracking for users that have the Do Not Track header set, it also clearly indicates this to users:

    “Active tracking using Piwik on this page has been disabled based on your browser's Do Not Track (DNT) setting.”

    Another example are the cookie banners made by TRUSTe, which allow a visitor to choose between different types of cookies used, if they find the right link to click:

    Differential privacy was mentioned, but nobody knew enough to really talk about it. Here is a slide deck about the topic a friend made a few years ago.

    Another privacy aspect covered was how federated/distributed systems by design create many additional copies of data, with less centralized control over them. This is of course a desired property, but it also means that these copies might be hard to delete and are presented in different aggregations users might not be aware of. While a deleted silo post is expected to be gone from outside of dedicated archives, a deleted post on a GNU Social/Mastodon instance likely is still visible on other federated instances. If one instance blocks search engines using robots.txt, content from it still might be indexed on other sites. In an IndieWeb context, a site that backfeeds from Twitter likely still shows deleted interactions (and in general shows them in an unexpected context). Many IndieWeb tools also have public logs or APIs retaining data, which might be surprising to users. (e.g. brid.gy, webmention.io)

    Other random links that were mentioned:

    Meddelare by Joel, for showing aggregate counts of silo interactions, proxied through a private server.
    some notes on privacy settings for Wordpress installations

    Talking about our private sites, only I had progress to present: I improved my Micropub endpoint, and I have now explicit headers for replies, bookmarks, …: example post