I’ve been looking at adopting more and more IndieWeb principles as I get my blog setup. Today I took the time getting Webmentions setup, and wow it was a lot of fun! I wanted to write a bit about the process I went through to get it all setup and what I plan to do next. Here we go!
IndieAuth is in the process of transitioning to IndieLogin.
The first part of this process was to get IndieAuth working. I won’t go into too much detail about what IndieAuth is or how it works, but basically it is an IndieWeb approach to OAuth that allows you to identify yourself by your domain name. Third-party OAuth providers are used to authenticate your identity, or you can use a PGP key.
This works by placing the
rel="me" attribute on profile links, such as Twitter or Github.
Something important to note is that in order for this to work, the profile that you are linking to must have a link back to your website. This is pretty easy to do on Twitter and Github as you just put your website in your profile bio. I discovered that Keybase also uses
rel="me" links on your profile, however IndieAuth does not support identity authorization with Keybase since they aren’t an OAuth provider.
If you’re like me, you might be a little put off by having to use a service like Twitter or Github just to get IndieAuth working. After all, the whole point is to be able to login as “you”. This is where using a PGP comes in! You use a similar
rel attribute on a link to your public PGP key, though it looks like this:
If you use this method, you will be asked to sign a randomly generated string using your PGP key, then provide the signed string.
There is currently an open issue for IndieLogin not supporting ed25519 PGP keys.
I decided to use Webmention.io as my webmentions endpoint. It was made by Aaron Parecki, much like a lot of core IndieWeb services (thanks btw, Aaron!). I considered rolling my own implementation using Go or something, though for now this works very well.
Setting it up is easy once you have IndieAuth working. All you have to do is advertise your webmention endpoint, which looks something like:
This will handle all incoming webmentions and will display them on a nice dashboard on their website. Though webmentions are way better when you display them on your website!
Include the JS library somewhere on your website:
<script src="/js/webmention.min.js" async></script>
Place the following wherever you wish to render your webmentions:
You can also add some custom CSS to adjust how everything renders. Check out the Github Repo for information on how to do that.
The next thing I would like to do is to automate sending webmentions when I write a new blog post. Right now I have to send them out manually which is a bit tedious. I am thinking I will write some sort of bash script that runs as a Git Hook whenever I push changes to my blog’s repo. I may also leverage Telegraph in someway.
When I get that figured out I will be sure to share!