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General request: if you post pictures, please please include alt text describing the image so that everyone, regardless of visual ability, can enjoy your toot.

Please consider asking others to do this. Optionally, reconsider boosting toots if they don't have alt text.

We all have an opportunity to help shape the culture of this place and I'd love, love, love if it were "oh, everyone posts alt text with their images because that's just what you do."

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Did you know that you don't need to use link shorteners (, etc.) on Mastodon? All links, no matter how long, only count for 23 characters against your 500 limit!

(And since link shorteners are bad for user experience and break the web, there's almost no good reason to use 'em! 😄)

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Please consider writing your hashtags in upper camelcase so screen readers have a chance at figuring them out.

sounds like an giant undecipherable mess of sounds.

reads out "Why I Stay On Mastodon" 😄

(Reason #44 I stay here: my previous requests like this have been generally well-received, proving that most people are awesome.)

Junction box with four cat-5e cables running in ... and only three quickport connectors on the face.

I hope whoever cabled this place got some counseling.

MetaFilter, the non-shitty community website I run, is an achingly longevitive 22 years old today. Every year a site member makes a goofy birthday post to celebrate the very first post back in 1999, to a long-defunct site called that we eventually acquired the domain of.

New River Trail, end-to-end, with a great group of friends. There's something lovely about ending up near a town where you can dinner and breakfast.

Shout out to the folks at Creekside Cafe who were exceptionally helpful in getting us fed and launched in the morning. You know you're in the Appalachians proper when you can order livermush five ways.

Self-supported Tour de Mount Rogers: four categorized climbs, finishing with an 18 km long cat 1 to Mt Rogers park proper. (!!!) 🚲⛰💪

Big thanks to my companions for the planning, support, and fun!

(And then, later in the week, the usual lovely 13 km hike amongst the ponies to the peak of My Rogers itself.) 🐎


In late 1348, the Great Pestilence came to London. Over the next year, it tore across the country with horrifying ferocity—later, it will be estimated, 40–60% of the population died. By late 1349, things are winding down, and the survivors have begun to rebuild their lives.

In the Abbey of St. Alban's, north of London, they have gotten around to repairing the shrine of St. Amphibalus, the (probably apocryphal) saint who is said to have converted St. Alban himself. (It was damaged about thirty years ago by a falling roof beam.) It's given a new place near the shrine of St. Alban, and a bishop comes from Ireland to reconsecrate it. +


A reminder that if you have Amazon hardware, you will be automatically be enrolled in Sidewalk which shares your internet connection with neighbors unless you opt out (which they don't make it easy to do).

Or better yet, stop using their hardware. Period.

I don't get down to the New River Trail all that often but it's always a lovely diversion from over mountains. We got completely filthy and had to rig up a brake repair mid-ride... but there was an ice cream cooler at Foster Falls!

Freenode has put redirects in place on >325 channels bridged to Matrix. The bridge doesn't follow redirects so you'll have to manually rejoin the new address if needed. Tell us in if your channel is stuck. We're setting up the bridge asap.

I see Basecamp is celebrating their sudden influx of white supremacist customers.

(Ultra-nationalist media were the only outlets that covered Basecamp’s mistakes in a positive light. It’s near certain that most of these new customers come via these outlets.)

on image descriptions and screen readers 

as someone with sight problems (I hope they won't keep progressing until full blindness... but oh well), I really appreciate how much more accessible the fediverse is to disabled folks than other social media places, but I think there are some things to consider. Over time I've been taking some notes that might be helpful

• screen readers may not read punctuation as expected, so comma spam might not be audible, which may make the context confusing


I have encountered more image descriptions on Mastodon in 24 hours than I have in Twitter in a couple of years. Seriously. I'm not exaggerating.
As a blind person, this means a lot to me. If you read this and you describe your images, thank you so, so, so much on behalf of all of us. If you don't, now you know you'll be helping random Internet strangers make sense of your posts by typing in a few more words than usual.

COVID-19, vax study, menstruators needed 

Heyo! If you are a person who menstruates and you have received a COVID-19 vaccine, there is a STUDY OPEN NOW to track the side effects associated with menstruation, and how the vaccine affects periods! You can participate here: redcap.healthinstitute.illinoi

It is NICE AND GENDER-AGNOSTIC, all of the language seems to be inclusive, so!

Spread the word if you are comfortable doing so! :)

This is What3words want deleted. They are currently suing a researcher.
RT @Cryptome_org
WhatFreeWords Javascript Library (2.5MB)

Opened up some code from an open-source medical equipment project:

First file I open: 3 explainer comments in the whole file. Hey, there's a divide-by-zero. There's a buffer overflow because that's not how snprintf's return value works. Etc. :[

I work in a safety-critical systems and stuff like this makes me despair. I don't blame the programmers or look down on them, but, for @#$%'s sake, get some expert help.

We all make mistakes. Shape your process with that belief in mind!

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