Re-imagining the Web Portal

Commercial portals:

  • Yahoo
  • Excite
  • MSN
  • AOL
  • Excite
  • NBCi
  • Lycos


Non corporate portals

Usually subject oriented.  Topical or local directory plus forum or social network, news.

Portals were all about banner ads.  They wanted to keep you on site viewing new pages to get the banner reps.  Is their really a point for portals today without advertising?

Feature Wishlist for Hypothetical Indieweb Personal Blog Script

IMHO the Indieweb needs to have a plug and play blog script in order to gain wider acceptance.  Keep in mind I’m not a developer or a coder.  Script is aimed at individual bloggers for personal blogs.

Whole script needs to be something that can be 1-click installed on most hosts.

  1.  Simple themes that are easy to customize and share.  (A lot like the old HTML templates of the past.)
  2. Extending the stock blog script would be done through plugins.
  3. Commenting system built in.
  4. Indieweb stuff built in or the core plugins pre installed.
  5. Flat file database for long term robustness.
  6. At a minimum, a Markdown based editor to keep things simple.
  7. Categories and tags.
  8. Site search.
  9. Ability to migrate your posts.  So the migration format needs to be something most blog scripts use. WP?
  10. RSS
  11. SEO competent out of the box. Spiderable.
  12. Anti-spam – ship it with something like the Anti-spam Bee to protect comments.
  13. Some sort of captcha system.

What else?

Using a Private Webring to Link Your Sites Together

If you have a bunch of different websites one way you can link them together is by using a private webring.  A private webring has a closed membership and no signup for outsiders to join.

It’s a subtle way to share some traffic between your own sites without loading up your footer or sidebar.

You can make a private webring at:

or use one of the many different webring code scripts that are floating around.


Zetttelkasten as memoir

You could dedicate a zettelkasten as a sort of non-linear memoir.  Most of our memories are about an event or a scene.  You could use a zettelkasten to record one scene or memory from your life for each “slip” or card.  These could later be assembled for publication if needs be, or left as vignettes for retrieval via cross indexing.

This is different from journaling, diaries or blogs which are all linear time-wise.

Example:  My father, a child of the Great Depression, taught me, as a lad, to always check the coin returns on payphones for change left behind.  I later did this when walking through a restaurant lobby and my mother and grandmother were appalled my grandfather was amused.  Note: I made quite a bit of money in change over the years.

Ideas for using wiki scripts in websites

  1. Wiki’s are often used to build digital gardens or commonplace book.
  2. Wiki’s can be used as a knowledge base or instruction manual.
  3. You could use a wiki to make a directory that is less hierarchical than a traditional directory.
  4. You could use a wiki to make a local guide or a local tourist guide or travel guide or bike/hike trail guide.
  5. Wiki would work for a local restaurant review site.
  6. Recipe site.
  7. Product review site.
  8. Memoir – so many of our memories are incident by incident.  You could use a wiki as sort of a non-linear memoir.  (A zettelkasten would also work.)

Add other ideas.


Stand alone wiki scripts:

I only have a little experience with 2:  Doku wiki and Media Wiki.  For a wiki by an individual I think Doku is a better choice, because Doku uses a flat file database which will be way more durable over the long run.

MediaWiki (used by Wikipedia and  can scale very large.  Good for a membership editied wiki,  but most individuals do not need that kinda scale.

Plugins for WordPress.

There are many wiki plugins for *Press.  If you are already using Wordpress/ClassicPress (*Press) then adding a  wiki plugin might be the easiest way to establish a wiki as opposed to installing a stand alone script.

Yada Wiki is the plugin that always catches my eye, although I have no experience with it.