Using the indieweb easily from my phone has been
for a while now. A few of us
brainstormed the indieweb’s next big thing
over the weekend, and one idea that caught my eye was an “offline first”
mobile client that’s fully functional without connectivity and syncs to your
site when it is connected. This is a small but growing pattern among modern
mobile apps, and it’s great.
We could build this as a native mobile app or library, maybe using an
platform, but the indieweb community
prefers the mobile web to native apps.
So, let’s consider it a challenge!
Here’s a hand-wavy straw man design for a self-contained, browser-based
mobile micropub client on top of HTML5 and
all modern mobile browsers support:
- You load it in your phone’s browser, then save it so it’s usable offline.
- When you’re connected, it fetches your site, crawls your
feeds, and stores your posts locally. Maybe
all of them, maybe just the most recent or another heuristic. Could use
(well supported) and/or
- You can compose new posts and edit existing posts offline, using only
- When you’re connected, it publishes your updates via micropub.
Note that due to the
same origin policy, your site
will need to set CORS headers (e.g.
Access-Control-Allow-Origin) to allow the client to download its data and post
to it via micropub.
- Easily post pictures, videos, links, and other content by sharing/sending them
to the editor via deep linking (aka intents aka app links).
- Download your site’s
syndication targets, and other data
to provide a better posting UX.
- Register for web actions so you can use
it to easily indie reply,
- Download your moderation queue, ie pending
webmentions and native comments, and
let you approve or reject them. (We don’t yet have a standard for this.)
There are plenty of example apps with good UXes for managing posts offline and
updating when connected: WordPress,
SimpleNote, Quip, and most
email and messaging clients, just to name a few. They’re worth studying for UI
ideas and techniques.
This isn’t an itch for me personally, since my
site already has a great mobile app, so I’m
probably not the right person to build it. I’d love to see it happen, though.
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