WaterOnMars why and how ?

Why ?

wom-logo-128With wateronmars I’m obviously not claiming to have done anything original, but the idea of this project started about 2 years ago when I realized that news readers were my main window over the Internet (and not facebook nor google+ mind you) and that my bookmarks, that I would expect to be a solid basis for any kind of search over the Internet, were uselessly being stored and forgotten in delicious.

At that time I was reading Dave Winer’s blog posts about news and rivers and trying duckduckgo search engine in the hope that it would eventually offer better and more customized ways to search for information (I even proposed went as far as proposing that to duckduckgo team).

Eventually all this got me somewhat inspired and I decided that taking control of my “window to the web” was a very worthy motive to get my hands in the world of web apps developments.

How ?

This is a Python project based on django and which uses extensively Twitter Bootstrap, mousetrap.js and infinite scroll for its graphical components and UX, and south to ease future database migrations. Also the heroku platform was of a great help to experiment with the web apps as I was building it.

I must say that I’m pretty surprised of how much great (by their quality and ease of use) libraries and services are available to build web apps this days. It almost seems to be a more mature ecosystem than the one of the scientific and multimedia workhorse libraries I’m used too.

As a conclusion, let me just say that I would very happily welcome contributors to this project, so feel free to fork it on github !

Abandoning one of my pet projects: Goodbye BackupMonitor

Since Ubuntu integrated DejaDup  as a default backup tool for users’ data, I’ve stopped using BackupMonitor, my miniature framework for personal backups.

Just to sum things up, and also because BackupMonitor still has some features that IMHO are missing to DejaDup, here is a quick comparison of both applications.

The common stuff first, DejaDup and BackupMonitor are both aimed at making copies of personal data, regularly.

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From the general to the particular: plug several RSS feeds into a Facebook wall

The setting

By conviction and also because it’s just common sense IMHO,  I refrain from storing too much content (text, photo, code) directly into sites like Facebook (and as some would say “corporate silos”) that tend to consider their user’s data as their own a bit too easily.

More precisely, the best way to store ones data remains one’s own computer (with a tad of backup that is) and that’s the main way I store my photos and code.

For data a bit more “endemic” to the Internet (blog posts and selection of photos to be shown), I’m using “free” services built on free software and using open protocols that make it easier to connect several of them together. In this matter, WordPress, zenPhoto and identi.ca are doing a fairly good job for me.

Eventually for very specific cases I’m going through proprietary services like Flickr, Twitter and Facebook.

The aim

Well, the aim is quite simple at first sight: make it so that the new posts and photos published on my blog or on identi.ca end up displayed on my Facebook wall.

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