From IndieWeb

Offline Posting was a session at IndieWebCamp Baltimore 2018.

Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=m8ewm3BRH1I

Notes archived from: https://etherpad.indieweb.org/offlineposting

IndieWebCamp Baltimore 2018

Session: Offline Posting

When: 2018-01-20 13:15


Session Overview

  • The session is about offline posting. Being able to write a post or notes offline and then post to a site/CMS when reconnected.
    • Could be his own site, or a method for posting to any site or CMS


  • Be able to open site that doesn't require connectivity and start typing notes
  • Ideal would be having an auto-save in this state
  • Could be used for offline collaboration
  • Could this be a service?
    • Connect a micropub service: Login, type offline into an interface such as Quill, and then it preserves it until you're connected
    • Does Quill have this?
  • Maybe a progressive web app?
  • Store in local storage in browser?
  • An inactive save feature could be useful
  • Focused primarily on mobile app/service for this
  • Be as plaintext as possible
    • Plaintext with tagging
      • Hierarchy of tags?
  • Don't want it to be cumbersome while capturing the content of the notes
  • Tags emerge when needed: default would be a 'blog' or a 'general' if not tagged, but then if needed could add a tag in to classify
  • Start simple and always iterate


  • Progressive Web App with service workers to do this
  • Matt: Has tried lots of apps and tools for this process:
    • Early 2000s: Single page wiki (notes wrapped in an HTML file). --> TiddlyWiki
      • This gave lots of speed to populate content into categories and then it was a single file
      • This could be offline. When wanting to use collab features it got really tricky
      • Single tool features work well but when he starts integrating collaboration, it starts to fall apart
      • a current favorite in terms of an effortless UX - [Agile Tortoise Drafts](https://agiletortoise.com/drafts/) (not as capable as Taskpaper and various other tools, but has never failed me)
      • important for Matt has been that the notes themselves and all significant features are always wrapped up in plaintext-readable markup
  • Jonathan: I like the workflow of writing in Markdown locally when offline and then pushing to github OR CMS when live
    • Issue: Wouldl be nice to have this for mobile! Computer is cumbersome for this, but effective
  • And useful resource for ios text editors (fairly comprehensive, longterm project): Brett Terprstra (creator of [Marked](http://marked2app.com/) markdown preview tool) [iTextEditors chart]()http://brettterpstra.com/ios-text-editors/)
  • Putting lots of work into a specific note that is a prelude for a later post * how does this relate to the later output
  • Should be able to always have a fresh note when you open something and then save it for later
    • Older notes would be preserved until deleted


  • Drafts: iOS, Android, Desktop.
    • Always starts with a new note, and when you close the app it auto saves and tucks it away
    • This has been useful for his lifestyle but has still found certain things lacking
    • Saves locally? Saves to cloud?
    • Nice interface for accessing drafts
    • Google Keep, works offline on mobile (maybe not on desktop)
      • Google Keep Chrome App: DOES save offline notes and should pull offline notes when connection is reestablished
      • Links notes to sites via Google account
  • Noter Live does a pretty good job of saving notes in the browser (local storage) in case the app crashes or problems occur prior to posting
  • SimpleNote: multi-platform software kind of like Evernote, Google Keep. Plaintext focused. Might be rewritten with offline capabilities (need to confirm)
    • Matt uses this - There is a way to sync with them but could also sync with other tools
    • update from review of https://simplenote.com/help/#syncing -- can write offline, and any action that creates, edits, deletes, or accesses the note when online potentially syncs it
  • Chris Aldrich I'll often use bookmarking tools and IFTTT workflows (PESOS) to trigger things quickly on the go that create drafts with timestamps that I can later update/publish when I'm back online.
    • Example: Diigo and Reading.am
      • Reading.am allows me to post via email and then IFTTT picks it up via RSS and posts a draft read post
      • Diigo also allows direct integration to IFTTT to pick up posts there to PESOS as bookmarks and or pick up annotations later.
  • WordPress has the ability to post via email, so one could draft a post in email and send it that way when later connected (pseudo-offline)
  • Day One:
    • Mac Tool (OS X, IOs) - Is there a way to syndicate this to a site, possibly via XML?
    • Start writing, and then it pulls info and preserves it for later
  • indieweb.org/offline
  • MarsEdit
  • Ulysses


    • What can we do today that will allow us to build something specific tomorrow?? **
  • Does Quill have an offline writing feature?
    • it preserves drafts
    • Would be nice if one could draft something via email while offline and send it to Quill or another endpoint for processing and ultimate posting via micropub


  • Is context information important for the notes?
    • Title + Body for POC, possibly timestamp
      • Example: Gregor listening to a podcast while traveling and wanted way to preserve this for later reflective post/note online
  • How to save the datetime for the post? What should the datetime be? The drafting time or the ultimate posted later time?
  • Are we writing plaintext into the app or HTML?
  • Formatting: do we want sequential posts or is it a scratch/draft for later revision/reflection?
  • How many pieces would we be writing?
    • Gregor's usecase would be few times a year since he'd usually be connected (except during flights, travels)
  • If using hashtags to tag and classify, how to identify?
    • Fewer and more precise if for a specific project
    • Could be more general for blogging
    • Build ontop of Quill as starting point?
      • Extend the offline/draft features present in Quill -> Ability to save more than 1 draft note at a time
      • Does Quill populate hashtags as they're typed?
      • Email to Quill for processing/posting?
  • Does Etherpad also work offline?
    • no, it doesn't. one of the other similar projects might tho (e.g. hackpad)

See Also