Toward a simpler indie web

Giles Turnbull on the future of the indie web beyond WordPress:

If we want the future web we’re all clamouring for, we need to give people more options for self-hosted independence. If we seriously, truly want the independent, non-enshittified personal web to flourish, we need to make it easier for people to join in.

Terminal commands are easy for you, but they’re a huge hurdle for most people to overcome. I’ve lost count of the number of times I’ve seen a link to a static website generator, which claims to be simple, and then the instructions start with something like:

It’s easy! Just gem install blah
then blah setup mywebsite
then cd mywebsite
then use nano or your favourite editor to write Markdown files! So easy!

This is not easy.

Heartily agree with this. I’m a longtime blogger with a self-hosted website using a WordPress installation, and I’m generally satisfied with that configuration because I’m tech savvy enough to be able to manage and tinker with it to my liking.

That said, I’d be very open to a static website generator along the lines of what Giles is describing if they weren’t so technically cumbersome compared to WordPress—not to mention lacking a user-friendly mobile app.

So bring on those easy indie publishers!

2 responses to “Toward a simpler indie web”

  1. Agreed. The tech savvy among us think nothing of all the steps required to get self hosted blogging setup. But it’s a lot of work for civilians, too much actually. I was heartened to learn there are some options for companies offering more point and click solutions.

    (as an aside, fellow wordpress user here, what plugin did you end up using for the “email me new comments” feature?)

    1. That feature comes with the theme, which is Beaumont by Anders Noren. I’ve used several of his themes over the years and would highly recommend: