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"Fediverse documentation is bad" is a stale take

If you're working on something, you're frustrated. You need to vent. Take care of yourself. That's good. You're supported

I'm not talking about that here. We'll get more directly helpful further down the page. When I say that complaining about the lack of docs is a stale take, I mean that those who don't have anything in the works posting takes about poor docs doesn't help

The ActivityPub spec is vague by design

ActivityPub is an extension of ActivityStreams 2.0, so the specification spans 3 w3c documents and references more than one external specification. There was a lot of humility involved in the process in that relevant specifications were still in early development. The spec writers, especially Chris Lemmer-Webber, have blogged and microblogged about that extensively

Also previous efforts gained limited traction because the technologies weren't mature. Quite frankly nobody could predict what the fediverse would look like. The chief virtue of ActivityPub is that it gives us some tools to start building things without pretending to be more conclusive than it is. The 2 strongest lessons to be learned from the prior art were that we didn't have all the information we need for a complete specification, but we did need some specific changes to the existing protocols. That's what we got

A microblogging UI represents compromises

Even though ActivityPub describes general purpose social networking primitives and spends a great deal of verbiage on media types, actor types, envelope addressing, and other features, we don't have those things, yet. What we have is microblogging

Inline tagging and implied addressing aren't the ideal social experience any more than Ruby on Rails is the most performant networking platform. These were choices made in Mastodon development when the community was small. We wouldn't be having discussions about how things could be better without some arbitrarily choices being made to establish our baseline. The important thing at this point in time is to develop an understanding of how to move forward

LitePub is a best effort

When I started writing YAAPS, I wanted to provide better documentation for the fediverse. Instead, I learned first hand why most of litepub.social was 404 pages. ActivityPub is really expressive, so you can't write about your ActivityPub project in specific terms and expect that experience to be generally applicable

That's why YAAPS is backburner while I work on Sputnik. Building an entirely new social experience on ActivityPub is just too much work. You can create new types of media. You can apply Mastodon-flavour ActivityPub to existing types of media. You can improve ActivityPub implementation on media types where it already exists. I want to do all three. A lot of people want all three to happen, but none of us can do more than one at a time. LitePub legacy is our best current description of ActivityPub as it is with Mastodon as the primary influencer. Sputnik Opphuichi is me applying that to a CMS that is more collaborative than current federated blogs - like Plone instead of WordPress. As LitePub implementations move forward, I'll be able to develop yaaps to support development of social experiences that aren't possible without federation

We'll need to get our hands dirty

I promise that it's possible to build the thing you want. If it's worth building, you will probably be building tools and libraries for yourself. That's okay

You'll use the tools available, get as far as the current docs get you, build a service that federates with others of its own kind, then you'll start working on compatibility with other severs. My own plan is to work on Pleroma compatibility before Mastodon. I'll discuss the reasons for that at some point

Your server can't talk to others until it has something to say

How you get content onto your server is up to you

Most services start with tightly coupled clients

The Mastodon API is not the solution for third party clients

ActivityPub C2S deserves consideration

Other C2S APIs might suit your needs, too

Federation is great, but why do you want it?

Mistakes were made

Microblogging isn't the best thing

Copying other media services isn't great, either

There are better things to do with federation

Don't worry about breaking the fediverse

Pleroma broke stuff and they're still here

Gab is trying to break stuff and they'll be hard to get rid of

It's okay to be MissKey

Break things for the right reasons