I want a linkblog like John Gruber/Daring Fireball. How do I set it up?
May 9, 2014 2:17 PM   Subscribe

I've long been an admirer of linkblogs like John Gruber's Daring Fireball and Dave Winer's Scripting News. I would like to start one on my own. What's the best way to go about doing this?

The basic format is:

HEADLINE (hyperlinked to another blog post or article)
Paragraph or sentence.

Ideally, this would be accomplished through a plug-in or template. I'm open to different platforms, although I'm most familiar with WordPress.

Any ideas?
posted by zooropa to Computers & Internet (6 answers total) 4 users marked this as a favorite
Tumblr is a dead-simple way to do what you're talking about -- it actually originated as a way to create low-weight linkblogs like you describe. (See Jason Kottke's 2005 description of "tumblelogs".)
posted by tweebiscuit at 2:21 PM on May 9, 2014 [3 favorites]

You probably want the DFLL plugin for WordPress. Easy peasy.
posted by bcwinters at 2:29 PM on May 9, 2014 [1 favorite]

Seconding tweebiscuit on tumblr. Apps that make it even more simple.
posted by gnomeloaf at 2:47 PM on May 9, 2014

You can actually use Winer's Fargo outliner to set up a linkblog, but I do think that tweebiscuit's tumblr suggestion is easier. :)
posted by raihan_ at 2:59 PM on May 9, 2014

Octopress supports this (and even explicitly says it is Daring Fireball-inspired). It's a static site generator, so you write your posts in plain text, run Octopress to convert them to HTML, make an RSS feed, etc, and then upload that HTML to a webserver. (Or host it on Github for free for that matter.)
posted by firefleet at 4:17 PM on May 9, 2014

Yay linkblogs! It's kind of a dying form, I'm psyched you're going to set one up. I've kept one for ten years now and find it hugely rewarding. I think of Winer and Grubers' linkblogs as being a little more like ordinary blogs in that they sometimes write paragraphs. I keep mine to very short one sentence comments only.

The way I do mine is via a Pinboard account. Every time I see something I want to linkblog, I add it as an URL to Pinboard with a browser extension. My Pinboard page is the web view of my linkblog. Pinboard also publishes an RSS feed for my followers. I also use dlvr.it to automatically tweet my links to a Twitter account.

The Twitter account has been very successful for me, it's a natural form of engagement for the short form. (The follower number is hugely inflated because it was a featured account for a couple of hours a long time back.) The Pinboard extension is great because it makes it very easy to linkblog any URL I'm looking at. I also like that Pinboard archives the full text of pages I link ($25/year); I often find myself searching my own linkblog. The one drawback to my setup is the web view is ugly. That's kind of purpose, I expect people to mostly follow via RSS or Twitter. But I may yet use IFTTT or the like to set up a Tumblr for a nicer web view.
posted by Nelson at 10:27 AM on May 10, 2014 [2 favorites]

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