News from July 2023
July's been a hot one – hot weather, hot events, hot blogosphere, hot hot hot! And this newsletter, hot off the presses, is no exception, so let's get down to it.
August Community Chat - Reclaiming Social Networks
The monthly Community Chat is back! On August 16th at 12pm ET, we will discuss ways of Reclaiming Social Networks. We'll be joined by Bonnie Russell from Michigan State University's MESH Lab to discuss ways the Humanities Commons is exploring ActivityPub to for an academic social network independent from some of the more volatile for-profit networks. Don't miss this, and bring some of your own ideas on how you're trying to build a network in what seems like a new moment for social.
Domain of One's Own Price Changes
Friendly Reminder that the price changes for our Domain of One's Own offering are effective starting tomorrow, August 1st, so if you're receiving renewal papers for DoOO any time after today, they'll reflect the new pricing model. For more details, please visit our announcement Price Changes for Domain of One's Own.
Revisit Reclaim Open Online
Reclaim Open Online has officially come to a close, but if you missed any of it make sure to catch the recordings. You can see all of the recap sessions by visiting watch.reclaimed.tech/reclaim-open. Be sure to also join us in Discord in the #reclaim-open channel as well. Sincere thanks to everyone in the community for making both the June event and the July Online event really come to life! We couldn't have done it without you all!
Reclaim Cloud Comes to Europe!
We now have an active European Union (EU) region in Reclaim Cloud, located in Frankfurt, Germany. This has been a long-time coming and we’re thrilled to expand the geographical scope and reach of Reclaim Cloud to the European Union. Not only will this provide additional server nodes in our broader cloud cluster, but it will also help make it easier for existing clients to remain compliant with GDPR regulations.
In Case Ya Missed It + Reclaim Today
On July 17th we premiered Olia Lialina's keynote as part of Reclaim Open’s virtual event. Lialina’s talk is very much a highlight given her ongoing work to preserve and curate the early web with online exhibits such as One Terabyte of Kilobyte Age, featuring homepages from the free web hosting service Geocities that might have been otherwise lost in the Yahoo! purge circa 2009. This keynote beautifully balances scholarly critique with a playful joy while exploring the aesthetic that defined the early web, while questioning the teleologic assumptions that is was merely amateur or a necessarily early and rudimentary stage of evolution of an online aesthetic. Watch it here.
In our most recent episode of Reclaim Today, we talked with Paul Hibbitts about his work to create Docsify This. This tool is part of a longer trajectory of Hibbitts’s work, which we first learned of through the open source flat-file content management system Grav to build out open course templates. His work with open source, markdown-based templates broadened to include Docsify, a lightweight tool for publishing documentation. More recently, he created his own tool, Docsify This, that enables folks to take markdown from any document and convert that into a web-based HTML page without the need for a server—making the entire process as simply as copying and pasting a link.
After the in-person Reclaim Open event, the Reclaim Team sat down to share our reflections throughout the in-person event and where we hoped the Reclaim Open Online sessions will be. We recorded a Reclaim Today episode to welcome folks to Reclaim Open Online. Catch the recap and check out all the other goodness throughout the month on the watch site.
Recent Blog Posts
Reclaim Open has been good for more than a few blogs, and Tim is enfuego with a post on why he is saying "Goodbye Reddit" and even "Trading TT-RSS for Inoreader" in a push to return to more regular blogging and blog reading.
In that spirit, Tim documents "Building a Streaming Rig" for Reclaim Arcade, and it is chuck full of good advice around equipment and the limits and possibilities of the YOLOBox. And inspired by Tim, Taylor documented his "Building a Streaming and Recording setup for Reclaim Open" and the YouTube channel full of recordings from Reclaim Open tells the tale of the tape.
But it doesn't stop at streaming! In "What I’m Learning from Learning French" Pilot underscores how "having a community of people who you can use your skills with, to have fun with them and get excited about stuff....is a huge boon to learning."
As part of a random request, Taylor was first "Spinning Up a Pretty Old WordPress Site Using Docker Compose" before "Spinning Up an Even Older WordPress Site Using Docker Compose." And since we're talking about older WordPress sites, this month marked the retirement of one of the OG blogging platofrms in higher ed, Jim reflects on the ever venerable "UMW Blogs: a Diamond in the Rough."
In fact, there was SO MUCH reflection by Jim this month. "10 Years a Reclaimer " marks the official birthday of Reclaim Hosting in 2013, and points to the idea of being an employee of the company he helped start and continues on a daily basis.
But Lauren knows when Reclaim Hosting needs a make-over and her recent post documents "A refreshed look for Domain of One’s Own and StateU." The pages that highlight Domain of One's Own and our test Domains school StateU.org are looking to the future!
New Support Documentation
Throughout the summer, we saw some cPanel interface changes. This includes the new cPanel Jupiter theme and even changes to the Domains section! We made sure to update our documentation to reflect those changes in cPanel and Gordon even reworked our guide to Adding a New Domain to cPanel. Take a minute to look through the changes to see how to add a domain to your cPanel.
We've got a good selection of tools and useful things this month for our staff picks!
Right off the bat, Taylor has a handful of DNS and WordPress related tools that might come in handy! First is ViewDNS.info, which is a giant toolbox of DNS and IP related tools on one site, including interesting ones like Reverse Whois Lookup and Reverse IP Lookup. Another interesting site Taylor found for solving DNS mysteries is whatsmydns.net/dns-lookup. We use the whatsmydns.net all the time around here at Reclaim to check on DNS propagation, but it turns out their dns-lookup tool can also provide a nice interface to see every type of record all at once!
Also from Taylor there's the WordPress Playground, which is a fascinating tool to quickly test drive a WordPress theme or plugin without having to install WordPress at all! This tool runs WordPress entirely in your browser! When you close the tab, poof, it's gone (although there are options to save it longer if you really want to).
Pilot suggests listening to an episode of the 99% Percent Invisible podcast called The Lost Cities of Geo. It's a great follow-up to Olia Lialina's Reclaim Open keynote! This podcast episode is centered around the work to archive and preserve Geo Cities before it was shut down, and Olia and the One Terabyte of Kilobyte Age are heavily featured in the episode.
Encryption keeps things safe and secure online, but did you know it can also be pretty groovy? Check out Encryption Lava Lamps to see how Cloudflare uses Lava Lamps as part of their encryption scheme!
And finally, #RIP Sinéad O'Connor. We'll miss your art and your presence; thank you for all you brought to the world. Here's the music video for the phenomenal song, "The Emperor's New Clothes."
Thank you all for another amazing month. See you in August!