A Quick Update

’Member when I said I’d update some of my WordPress plugins? Well, I didn’t do that. I did, however, close a bunch of existing issues, and probably should bring their WordPress.org versions in sync again, too.

If my /now page looks super outdated, it is because the things it lists are still very relevant. I’ve had a couple guitars and arcade cabinets, taken nearly completely apart, lying around for years now. And I’d love to be able to work on them. (And I do, sometimes.) It’s just that I’ve instead been, well, busy. Priorities, etc.

Turns out a full-time engineering job, an (ever smaller, but that’s a good thing) side business, two young kids, and a 110-year-old home are quite a bit of work, in fact.

Done a fair bit of thinking, too. Not sure I like the direction WordPress is headed. Think I may prefer a CMS that lets me, you know, manage content rather than build fancy pages without having to know HTML or CSS. (I know HTML and CSS.)

Been building a very simple alternative, on Laravel. I hope to turn it into something that is very easy to install and host (which is why I prefer PHP and MySQL over a fancier language). So far, I’m able to import my content, have got the basic admin interface working, and a simple theming system (which I first said I wouldn’t do, but it’s really better this way).

Oh, and it doubles as an IndieAuth server too, and supports Webmention for comments. Still working on Micropub support, although the basics are there. (Which means I’ll soon be able to post from a number of 3rd-party web and mobile apps as well.)

I thought of making it a package, so that implementers could easily build their app around it. With the above goal in mind, though, a standalone app—one that hopefully one day can be installed even by relative newbies—really is the better choice.

Meanwhile, I’ve already split off two packages that can be used in other projects: an IndieAuth (and token) server, and a Webmention package. The latter adds a Webmention endpoint to your application, and provides a “sender” helper class. I wanted for it to also parse and process webmentions (right now, it only performs some basic validation), i.e., store them as actual comments, but doing so is so very dependent on your database structure that I decided against it.

I’m still thinking of a minimal standalone service, though, that would incorporate this package (like my tiny URL shortener). To use in combination with static sites, for instance.

Such a service would fully process mentions, and then present them in a JSON-like format. Except, such services already exists, and I don’t think anyone’s waiting for a Laravel variant. A combined toolkit, with IndieAuth and perhaps even Micropub—far from trivial, because the handling of Micropub requests, too, is very much dependent on how a site’s set up—might be more interesting, then. But: not going to happen anytime soon.