January 30, 2010

Mirroring is a good idea in general, because sites do go down due to maintenance needs and for other, less innocent reasons, and it became glaringly needed on the Ravine in 2009. As I'll explain elsewhere, at least at the moment, I'm not as angry as I was, because I suspect that a language barrier might have been at the root of what seemed to be an outrageous act of betrayal on the part of Diigo's management, but there are still problems that require a presence elsewhere. Problems that don't seem to be going away.

While a number of sites and feeds are affiliated with the Ravine, each serves a different purpose. What you see below isn't a collection of completely free standing efforts, but a coordinated whole, out of which you are free to pick and choose what seems to be of interest to you.

  1. The Ravine: My homegroup on Diigo - Site reviews and commentary. The page that everything you see here grew out of, originally. You will see more in depth articles, with much less whimsy than you'll find in the bookmark page alluded to, below, but more of a serious discussion of the philosophy and skepticism that will be at the center of what I'll be doing on the Ravine. Also, unlike the next page, this one allows me to post photos. If you want to see my pictures of Witches' Gulch or Antelope Canyon someday - or somebody else's photos of places like those - this will be a place to start.

    • My Bookmarks on Diigo - Something more like a microblog, albeit one with paragraph breaks, something that many microblogging platforms don't seem to allow. Brief discussion of pages encountered, a few paragraphs long, with maybe a few links into the homegroup, from time to time. That might sound like a good argument for signing up for this feed and not the one above, but it really isn't. I'm not going to link to myself every time that I update a subject on the homegroup, and so you'll miss a lot if you just follow the bookmarks.

  2. The Ravine at Typepad - A content mirror. The format isn't the same. I don't have groups available to me at this host, but I do have something that Diigo doesn't offer: pages, free standing pages created, allowing the user to create small webpages for his blog on the Typepad server. This will allow me to handle side issues off to the side of the main line of discussion, the side threads on the Diigo homegroup providing the content for pages on Blogs.com.

    • My Bookmarks on Typepad - Another content mirror, this one to the Diigo bookmarks page, with one improvement made possible by the more flexible platform. Videos and images are embedded into the text, allowing one to see some of the reviewed content without leaving the microblog.

Of course, the one thing that one absolutely has to have to accompany any bookmarking page and its mirror is another bookmarking page.

  1. Soundbites - My page of bookmarks (and very brief page reviews) at Delicious (formerly Del.icio.us). So called because of Delicious' limitations - only a few hundred characters per post allowed, and no paragraph breaks. This will be somewhere I send a lot of the very brief reviews that, for some reason of another, will seem to fit into the Ravine less and less over time.

    Delicious is a Yahoo product, so, having little faith in Yahoo's commitment to its users, I will be looking for a place to create a mirror to this microblog, at some point in the near future.

  2. Soundbites / Mirror on Simpy - Found it! Not very pretty, but so far, The owner does seem to be treating his service as a labor of love, and that's a very good thing. Even if the spammers don't seem to share the love.

  3. My Google Profile, Pages and Update group - A central index page that will include links to Knols, docs, notebooks, Googlegroup pages and other (relatively) small pages and an announcement group for posting notice of updates. You don't sign up for the Googlegroup, itself, for reason I'll explain elsewhere. You sign up for the MYbloglog community, should it still be in existence, or for the e-mail updates. Which, really, when you think about it, should give you everything that you would want from a subscription to an announcement group, anyway.

Diigo is home to a number of groups, whose functionality would probably be quite satisfactory, were Diigo not so fond on rearranging its users pages, seemingly just for the sake of proving that it could do so. That foolishness has, perhaps, come at a cost - at the time of this writing, those groups seem to be barely used. The same, however, can not be said of the various blogging hosts, pointing the blogger wishing to connect to the outside world with a not completely satisfactory solution - commenting on other blogs. As intent on self-destruction as ever, most of the various blog hosting services have decided to slap "rel=nofollow" on all links, whether the bloggers wish to see this feature implemented or not, undermining the cohesiveness of the community. But at least, for now, one can get a discussion going and maybe get people to take a look at what one has written about subjects of mutual interest.

  1. Blogger Notes - Writing about what others have written on Google's blogging system about some of the subjects discussed on my main blog, and related topic matter.

  2. Livejournal Comment Blog - Going over to SixApart, I discuss some of the discussions I've entered there.

  3. Tribe Journal - While it lasts. While it's up. Expect outages, and idle time between posts, but also expect unexpected outbursts of friendliness in many corners of this site.

  4. Last.fm Journal - More commentary, this time on a music focused social networking site.

  5. Wordpress Comment Blog - Based on Wordpress.com, not Wordpress.org, so you will be looking at a template in the background. Oh, well. It can't be helped.

You also have the option of following me as I post to the various comment hosting services. Given the nature of the subject matter of my blogs, these will be an usually important part of my blogging effort. Which is why you'll see my comments backed up elsewhere, just in case a blog vanishes or an unreasonable deletion occurs. I respect the right of other bloggers to screen commenting on their blogs as they wish - it's a right that I exercise, myself - but my comments belong to me, not to them.

  1. IntenseDebate Profile - Comments on maybe the least popular of the three services, judging by the frequency with which I run into it.

  2. Typepad Profile - My remarks posted using that social comment hosting service.

    • The Gully - Microblogging in real time, mercifully screened, because I really don't feel that you need to know which brand of toilet paper I'm buying, or whether or not I think that some actress is totally hawt, dude. In this one, as I go off on trips mentioned in advance in "Quiet Times" (look below) and you get to see everything go wrong, in high definition photography. Whoo!

  3. Disqus Profile - Yet another comment hosting service. Try viewing this in Firefox, as it has problems loading in Internet Explorer, problems which the provider seems unwilling to address.

  4. Passages on Upcoming - Not a comment hosting service, but mentioned here because of a connection to my microblog on Typepad. Here, I talk about the events you'll see fall apart on the Gully.

    Given Yahoo's habit of buying and then destroying companies, I'll be sure to create a mirror to this microblog somewhere else.

  5. Best Laid Plans on Blogger - Discussion of the planning of events mentioned on "Quiet Times" and "The Gully".

  6. The Ditch / My Blog Comments - A very simple blog, on which my comments on the comment hosting services above will be mirrored.

One might reasonably ask how much photography one would find on a philosophy blog, but, of course, the Ravine is not purely a blog of philosophy, but rather a blog on which philosophy will be found, frequently. As I explain elsewhere, one continuing theme you will find on my Flickr photostream is that of nature setting limits for man, which strikes me as being a nice metaphor for ethical philosophy, especially of the rule utilitarian sort. I find this nice fit for another reason, as well.

The Ravine, began as a spin-off of the Abyss, which I created when I noticed that the old (and now departed) Ma.gnolia allowed more flexibility than I had thought, and I started blogging there. The system didn't let me insert images, so my choice of topics was going to be more limited, confined to those subjects that seemed best suited to all text blogging. This was going to be a much smaller, more limited blog, but still a site review centered blog, like the Abyss - it was going to be a little Abyss. Hence the name "The Ravine" - a little canyon, or a little abyss, to use a word sometimes connected with canyons.

This was most convenient, because I was completely fascinated by those little places, especially the slot canyons out West. This might not sound too terribly convenient for somebody who frequently bemoans the fact that he is trapped in Northern Illinois, but the Dells and Starved Rock are at hand, and at rare moments, I do manage to escape the region. The signiature little canyons won't be the only places to photograph, either. Caves fit in with the theme (one can't step through a cave wall), as does the season of Winter, itself, the cold setting limits in that it rules out the option of linger outside for long.

  1. My Photostream - All of the pictures I've uploaded to my account on Flickr

  2. My Homegroup - Where I talk about the images on my photostream, and some of what I've seen and taken part in on the Flickr site, in the course of writing my main blog, which is listed lower on this page.

  3. My Personal Bookmarking on Flickr - Images and Pages on Flickr that I found interesting, and discussion of the same.

  4. My Group Moderation Journal on Flickr - Where I discuss policy and why I made the decisions I did. Mercifully, this probably won't be updated very often - not a group interesting enough to be read, casually - most of the time - but it does include

  5. Flickr Favorites - The photos uploaded to Flickr by other users that I liked or found interesting.

I will post some images on Tribe, where some of my "tribes of one" will parallel the ones I've created at Flickr in function. Regrettably, no parallel exists on Tribe to the favoriting function on Flickr. These groups will mirror the content of their counterparts on Flickr, which will discuss content on both Flickr and Tribe.

The main tribe gallery will be its own place. I haven't decided, yet, where I'll mirror it.

  1. Main Tribe Gallery - the Images on my profile at Tribe.net

  2. My Personal Bookmarking on Tribe - More freeform reviewing of content, this time content usually found on Tribe. Images, discussions, blogs ....

  3. My Group Moderation Journal on Tribe - Why I did as I did, when running a tribe.

A few recipes ... I hope you like garlic ...

  1. My Nibbledish Page - Recipes and photos. The focus will be on Eastern Mediterranean food, especially Egyptian and Greek.

I was please to discover that Youtube does offer feeds, .

  1. My Favorites - Videos which I liked, or at least didn't want to misplace. None of these videos are mine.

  2. My Uploads - You might be in for a wait. I am very poor, and so don't have access to a videocamera - yet. Maybe someday, maybe even someday not too far off in the future. Or maybe not; no promises. Perhaps an even greater challenge will be casting films whose politics are going to be well to the right of where most actors like to be. I'm writing a blog about skepticism and objective morality, so think about where that leads, dramatically. I'll see what I can do.

The next two pages ... I guess they need to be there, but you probably won't want to subscribe to them, for reasons about to become obvious.

  1. Quotation - Tribe.net's TOS includes a bizarre rule against quoting other members, so when I document a discussion, I must do it elsewhere. The only point to subscribing to this feed would be that by doing so, one can skip directly to the discussions, bypassing the backstory and warning pages. I'm not sure that this is a good thing, but I'm also sure that some readers will prefer that, so I'll offer this as an option.

  2. Angst - Where I post when I need to vent a little anger. I'll try to make it readable, but the circumstances are what they are, and my mood will be what it is, when I write. You've been warned.

The last listing might be of particular interest to those who've linked to my pages: a group that exists for at most three simple purposes ...

  1. To notify readers when I've moved a page
  2. To share tasty recipes made using peanut butter
  3. To mock one of Yahoo's past executives

... and one could make the case that we've only seen two simple purposes. Look up the Peanut Butter Manifesto, and you'll see why.

  1. Updates and Introductions / The Ravine - As with the Google update group, you can't sign up for this Googlegroup, but you can sign up for update notices that will tell you when new material has been posted. If we meet, I'll tell you why this was necessary.

There are no feeds left to see, so you might as well return to the main page or to the Ravine at Typepad or Diigo, unless you'd rather return to your ring.