Some of you may already have seen https://solar.lowtechmagazine.com/2018/09/how-to-build-a-lowtech-website/ . It is a re-design of Low-Tech Magazine that I did together with Marie Otsuka and Lauren Campbell. After a few months of working on it I'm happy its out in public, survived the attention and creating discussions!
For those of you interested I'll present some experiences and findings about the project during Radical Networks: https://radicalnetworks.org/
Held between october 19 and 21 in Berlin. Really interesting yearly conference on alternatives network topologies such as #mesh and #p2p, protocols new and old, meaningful understandings of #networking politics, weird prototypes etc etc organised by @chootka
@rra great ! I knew the website long before but this redesign is perfect for the purpose ! congrat !
@Ninjatrappeur its hard to keep up with these discussion threads but there are some interesting comments there! I wouldn't mind an invite. By the way, in case you are active in the discussion at lobsters, I've made a lengthy response over on grid powered lowtech magazine adressing most questions : http://www.lowtechmagazine.com/2018/09/how-to-build-a-lowtech-website.html?cid=6a00e0099229e88833022ad36e595d200c#comment-6a00e0099229e88833022ad36e595d200c
Do you not understand what uucp is?
@Ninjatrappeur @rra @sifr Remember how we communicated before reliable internet: UUCP, and other store-and-forward protocols. If I were rebuilding the network from scratch, say after disaster or after outright corporate capture of the IP infrastructure, that's where I'd start.
Usenet, which was in many ways a precursor to ActivityPub, worked well over UUCP (as did email).
@rra what a beauty!
@rra It's inspiring!
@rra Are you someone we can ask technical questions about the project, and if so do you mind if I do? :)
@endomain yes please feel free!
@rra What I'd love to see is some idea of how much the current draw from the hardware you use for the site device varies over time.
I was curious if we could use a similar technique (in my region, the wind is often above 10mph so we might consider homemade microturbines as well as solar) for running a custom, minimal ActivityPub server, so that people could have a purely off-grid mastodon instance.
@rra I'm trying to work out what a slightly more sophisticated processor load would look like in this case.
Hi @endomain I've written some technical documentation about the project over at https://homebrewserver.club/low-tech-website-howto.html
The power statistics of the server are actually published here: https://solar.lowtechmagazine.com/api/stats.json
From what I've experienced running in hosting the post.lurk.org mastodon instance, you'd need a much beefier machine and probably would also need to attach an external hard drive. Pleroma is actually designed to be run from RaspberryPi-like machine so perhaps you'd like to start there?
@rra Thank you! I'm reading this now.
As for the available power; I'm woking on writing an ActivityPub implementation compatible with Mastodon's rules that does not have any interface and uses tricks I know in my capacity as a distributed systems engineer to reduce I/O loads.
I only just learned of Solid, but it's in a similar design where your workstation terminal would provide the UX independently.
Most modern web browsers support Cache & SW, and they represent a considerable power savings in mobile contexts for clients. I had never considered it before, but I suppose it'll amortize the cost of sending the JS and result in server power savings quickly.
A few people I've seen say this was not necessarily more ecological than a traditional shared server. I was wondering if you could with your setup keep a few extra websites with that too in order to maximise its footprint.
@Niquarl This could very well be the case as there are economies of scale can to higher efficiency. In our case during the biggest surge of traffic our server was only at 30% capacity all the time. This means we could have shared the hardware with two other similarly designed popular websites..
However, for the project low-energy use was not the only goal. We also wanted to show how you could do this without the cloud, where hardware and material conditions are abstracted. How you could do it with a DIY solar setup etc..
It is like with the dithered images, it works for us and the design of our page. It might be less applicable to others. The same principles can be applied different in other use cases though.
@rra oh, you are on mastodon. instant follow.