♊ Thoughts on Gemini
It occurs to me that gemtext is the markup language we could have used fifteen years ago, when wikis were poised to become the next big thing: an ubiquitous kind of social network that everyone used by default. And they missed that boat in no small part due to being utterly inaccessible.
Also, can't help but notice that in Geminispace people have conversations by reading each other's capsules and replying on their own. It's almost as if comment boxes were never really needed, let alone WebMentions or publish-subscribe systems. The web just allowed us to vastly overextend.
Gemlog.blue strikes me as complementary to this place: a blog farm to Flounder's personal wikis. Wish they'd also make journals available over the web as well as Gemini, as it can lure more people over this early on (and frankly, I find gemtext useful outside of Gemini as well). But that's nitpicking.
There's no technical reason why corporations can't come to gemspace. Just get a server going and start publishing advertorials peppered with ads. Even a newsletter subscription form is perfectly feasible. It's just that ads would have to be plain text and forms couldn't pop up in your face. And corporations will never go for it because, frankly, it would lay bare just how little they have to say. Too bad, so sad. But also ironic.
Conversely: dear journalists and scientists, this is a hint. Take it.
I wasn't going to update this page much more, but there's a new dispute in the Gemini community surrounding the favicon.txt convention. Seriously? Wasn't it their slogan all along that most extra things people will want to do can be left to client behaviors and conventions like this?
Proponents of Gemini aren't minimalists but *controlling*. Makes me so glad I got the hell out of Dodge when I did. Speaking of which:
Your mistake there, my friend, is not realizing this crowd was largely made up of neckbeards all along. By the way, please find a better term, because criticizing appearance is Not Cool. Anyway: I already covered the main points above, but what does it tell you if the creators of Gemini do not in fact want it to become more appealing and useful, even to us whose support made Gemini surpass Gopher in popularity after a few short months?
Because without us, Gemini would be forgotten by now. And here they are saying we don't matter.
Speaking of which: I noticed people embellishing their capsules with emoji, and started doing the same. Protocol maintainers, take note: this is what people want. Your continued disdain leads to a bad outcome.
In fact, I believe by now the Gemini experiment has gone on for long enough, and it's time to draw some conclusions:
- Gemini is too barebones after all, missing important features that people want (and you can't tell them they're wrong to want things).
- Mandatory encryption makes life hard for everyone: developers, sysadmins and users. In fact by now it causes more problems than it solves.
- Accessibility was essential after all; to throw away decades of work by web browser developers is a Bad Idea.
And maybe some of this could be fixed, if there was the will to do it (and it's nowhere to be found). But then Gemini would just add back 80% of the features in Lynx, and poorly at that. So can we please drop the charade already?
The cutting room floor
Last updated: 24 April 2021