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Everywhere is Here

I’m not a big fan of social media. Partly it’s because I don’t like crapping out volumes of mundane personal information for the world to see. Mostly it’s because I don’t like that stuff being completely controlled by a third party. I still do participate in a few online discussion sites; I link to the main ones in the side bar.

One of those sites is Bruce Schneier’s security blog. The software he uses to support comments is a bit clunky in my opinion. It is too easy to lose what you wrote by accidentally clicking the wrong navigation widget in your browser. I also had a comment held for moderation once, and I would have been rather annoyed if I put 30 minutes of effort into writing something only to have it disappear into a black hole without recourse.

The straw that broke this camel’s back was a recent post I made to Bruce’s blog that got the ax. It should have been here, but obviously it has been deleted. It wasn’t even in the least bit offensive as far as I can surmise. All I did was essentially say that people need to be held accountable for their errors when it comes to running an insecure organization. A moderator presumably decided that sentiment wasn’t suitable for public consumption for some strange reason, and now it’s gone.

So I’ve decided to implement a workflow I’ve been thinking about for a while. Everything I “publish” on a site that is outside my control I will also archive on a site that is under my control. For the personal stuff that falls under the umbrella of my Impossibly Stupid ramblings, I’m going to start archiving those things here. The format is going to be a bit ad hoc for now, but the idea is a mixture of Git and/or blockchain concepts: a repository of immutable content that is identified and linked together via hashes.

I’m not sure how much use I’m going to get out of doing this, but it’s an itch that’s been waiting to be scratched for a while now. There’s just too much data flowing in too many directions these days to have any real trust that remote systems will operate in your best interest. Ultimately, I have in mind an OS (or desktop environment) that would do this sort of thing behind the scenes. After all, how much sense does it make to have a hard drive that stores terabytes of data, but I somehow still have no record of less than a kilobyte of text I wrote last week just because it was in a web browser?