A collection of minimalist web blogging platforms

Boing Boing’s Rob Beschizza has made a web publishing ‘toy’ as he calls it, text.fyi. It’s small, brutalist, anonymous and mostly just a fun little thing to play around with. Here’s the list of features from BoingBoing:

This is the dumbest publishing platform on the web. … There’s no tracking, ad-tech, webfonts, analytics, javascript, cookies, databases, user accounts, comments, friending, likes, follower counts or other quantifiers of social capital. The only practical way for anyone to find out about a posting is if the author links to it elsewhere.

But it is legible, no-nonsense static hypertext, good for short stories, not-short-enough tweets and adventures and all your numbers station or internet dead drop needs. Here you can scream into the void and know the form of your voice is out there forever.

Search engines are instructed not to index posts and I’ll do my best to make sure this isn’t used as a tool by spammers or other abusers. Nonetheless, posting will be turned off if anything bad grows out of it.

Use Dumbdown to format posts: #header, **bold**, *italic*, `code`, >quote, and hyperlinks in the format [link](http://example.com). Try !hacker and !professor and !timestamp too. …

Long live the independent web!

Then goes on to write about a list of very similar web publishing platforms for small content like this:

txti.es is plain and perfect. Unlike txt.fyi it allows post editing for the duration of your browser session. Barry T. Smith made it with Adam Newbold to provide “fast web pages for everybody,” especially those with poor internet and low-end devices. (Newbold also made motherfuckingwebsite.com, itself among the many inspirations for txt.fyi; see also Drew McConville’s bettermotherfuckingwebsite for an idea of what a line of CSS can do for you.)

Said So is “a simple, anonymous, non-indexed, non-searchable microblogging platform,” but with share links, and stylish typography. Writes author Apostolos Pantsiopoulos: “Anonymity was the first thing that interested me. Then after I watched the documentary “helvetica” I was inspired to create a minimal posting service that removes all the unnecessary clutter and deliver the message as emphasized as possible, using a font that has this “authority” effect on people.”

I really, really like this. Sure it may be stupid and nowhere near as fully powerful as an actual blog (ala this site), and it’s probably not just for the brutalist design1. Maybe it’s just because it’s an echo chamber for my thoughts, but any kind of indie centralised writing is great and can go a long way. Jason Kottke just celebrated his websites 19th birthday. That’s an amazing acomplishment that has outlasted most blogs. I hope Valiant Ghost does the same (A few months – 2-3 years going strong!).

You should start a blog too if you haven’t already. As a decentralised echo chamber for your thoughts and feelings. As one of my blogger idols Rands said: Support freedom of the press. Start a blog.

  1. I’ve had a weird obsession with brutalist design lately, both in architecture and on the web. Maybe it’s just because my university has brutalist architecture, or that I found brutalist web design was a thing and then spun my own 90’s-esque page on Neocities. There’s something very stark about it. 

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