Eclectic ENFJ, sketcher, bioinformagician.
Gabriele Girelli's avatar

2022W#38

I have never been one to write about personal matters or to keep a sort of public journal on my website, but here we are…

In the past few weeks, I had time to finally get my hands back on the site and on a few other hobbies. And while some of these topics would deserve, and maybe will have, a post of their own, I thought of starting a series of weekly notes where I will recap some of the things done, discovered, or enjoyed during each week.

So, what happened this week that triggered the writing of this post? Quite a few things, actually!

p.s., this will also be a way for met to (maybe) finally get used to counting weeks as they typically do here in Sweden 🤦‍♂️

Weekly journal

A bunch of new things this week… for example, I started going to the gym again! I definitely needed to start exercising again after such a long pandemic-induced break.

On Wednesday, I attended the Homebrew Website Club by IndieWeb, which ended up being the inspiration for most of the website’s updates I’ll talk about below.

On Friday I had an amazing Georgian dinner with some friends! We tried both red and orange Georgian wines, and I even managed to bring back home a beautifully decorated wine amphora 🤩 The place is called Amphora Vinbaren, you can see its location on GoogleMaps.

Georgian dinner at Amphora

🧅 Onions and berries 🍓

I finally removed the dust from my Onion Omega2+ and Raspberry Pi 2B. I spent a bit of time updating them and everything, but glad to see they both still work with no hiccups.

I also followed the instructions to move the root of the Omega2+ to an external SD card and give it way more space for future projects. Sadly, when I tried to cross-compile something from my workstation I hit a bug due to some old software shipped with Ubuntu 22.04. But 22.10 should include the fix, and it’s not that far in the future, so I’ll have to wait a bit longer there.

The first project I have in mind is to have the Omega2+ host a custom dashboard with all the websites and resources I typically use when surfing the web 🏄‍♂️

Stable diffusion

Stable diffusion, the image-generating AI, is very hot right now. A friend who’s been playing with it recommended trying it, just for fun. I ran both the original one and an optimized version and played a bit with some prompts. I especially like the pencil sketch-like ones!

Stable diffusion results

Prompts, left-to-right top-to-bottom:

  • A strawberry floating in space
  • Pencil sketch of a giant dragonfly
  • Pencil sketch of a dragon flying over a lake
  • A gargoyle cow boy riding a lizard horse to catch a potato cow

Website’s updates

During the “Homebrew Website club” we talked about several things: I captured some of them as TODOs on the website’s CHANGELOG page. This week I worked on removing the third-party dependencies that triggered third-party requests when visiting a page:

  • I dropped the dependency to Gravatar for locally stored images.
  • FontAwesome, Bootstrap, and GoogleFonts are now self-hosted.
  • The biggest change: instead of using Jemoji to serve emoticons via GitHub, I am now using pure text emojis (usually selected via EmojiPedia)!

Why removing all third-party requests? For a couple of reasons above all else. First and foremost, to protect the privacy of the people visiting the website: any third-party request could potentially be logged by the third-party provider 😱 Moreover, earlier this year a website in Germany was fined for breaking GDPR because they served GoogleFonts as a third-party resource, allowing Google to log the IP address of any request done by their website’s visitors. So, better be extra careful and avoid any future litigations whenever possible. For more details, have a look at this article by TheRegister.

Finally, all these changes required an update to the ToS page. I am trying to be as transparent as possible but, in the coming week, I will add to the page the rationale behind some choices. I am also exploring self-hosting options, to finally get away from GitHub Pages and Cloudflare, but that might require some more time still.

I almost forgot! I also started looking into different accessibility tests to make the website as compliant as possible, more updates on this in the coming weeks!

🎼 Song of the week

  • Can I Hold You Anymore? (feat. Jamie Lidell) by Laura Escudé: YouTube.
2022W#38