Hello! I'm Ben Terry.
Welcome to the Server Room!

Here is the Server Room. It's where I will talk about computer stuff, internet things, etc. Overall, I have this feeling like free/open source software, the internet, cheap and cool little computers (like Raspberry Pi) and all just give us all the power to do a lot of things that used to be very difficult or impossible. It's totally amazing! Online I often hear people complain about social networks or big tech companies doing this or that, but... we have the power, if we really want it.

The Gemini Protocol

One of the fun projects out there on the net is Gemini. It's a protocol that pitches itself as heavier than Gopher, but lighter than the web. Gemini runs on simple servers that listen on port 1965, and those servers serve up simple Gemtext. Gemtext is simple and pretty similar to Markdown in many respects. All Gemtext is based on lines, and there are only a few types of them: Unordered lists, Header 1, 2 & 3, Preformatted Text, Regular Text and Links. There seem to be a few goals for the project. One is that the protocol is intended to be so simple that a basic server for it could be coded in 100 lines or less, simple enough for a single person to understand and keep it all in mind. Another is that the protocol is intended to be resistant to some of the forces that bloated and complicated the web. Pages are simple text with no embedded pictures, cookies or other trackers. When you request a page, you get only that page and not anything else. Another goal of lesser importance, but certainly some of the fun, is just the slower, more old school web vibes the project and community engender.

One thing with projects of this nature is that inevitably there are people who don't see the value in it. That's fine. It doesn't have to be for everybody. Even for those who may be intrigued, it can be difficult to get your foot in and find enough content to keep yourself interested. Others might want to create some stuff and don't know how to get it on the net with this protocol. Here are some links for those people!

I hope to add a few more links as well. I have some spread between a couple of my computers. The community has come up with a way of creating links that allows many clients to subscribe to a capsule's "Gemlog" (kinda like subscribing to a blog via RSS), which is nice for giving you new material to read. I like the vibe in Gemini Space, I've found enough content to keep my interest and it feels a bit like discovering people's sites back in the late '90s. I even run my own server at Dreamcloud Academy and have a capsule up on tilde.club.

Assorted Links