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Alex Schroeder
Emacs, Lisp, Perl, Wiki, D&D
Emacs, Lisp, Perl, Wiki, D&D

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These days I mostly hang out on Mastodon.
For RPG stuff, that would be, for everything else that would be If you're interested, here's how I suggest you get started:

I'm also available on Diaspora, as

My Blog
I also keep a blog/wiki: – I guess I still like the idea of running my own site.
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Another alternative to pull it all together after the sacking of Rome...
So I am in the process of migrating my #rss feeds to Selfoss, a cross platform, hosted, web based feed reader:

I am really super happy with it with 26+ feeds already in there, I think maybe 10 of them are planets (feeds of feeds so really I likely have a couple hundred blogs getting aggregated). I am not using a heavy duty database, only sqlite and it is running very nicely.

For about a week, I will make it publicly viewable in read-only mode if you want to take a look at it and see what you think.

View it in a browser, view it on your phone. Lemme know what you think. It was pretty easy to set up, but the authentication setup was a bit kludgey. I would be happy to help someone set it up if they are interested in reading their favorite blogs.
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There are ways to get the images! (This is the $20 tool)
G+MM are officially recommending the Friends+Me Google+ Exporter.

Friends+Me Google+ Exporter exists, works, is easy to use, is under active development, and the developer has been phenomenally responsive. All of this in direct contrast to Google's own Data Takeout.

This is especially the case for migrating G+ content to a new site. Wordpress and Blogger are directly supported, a usable JSON extract is also possible for other platforms.

The free product will export up to 800 posts per channel, the $20 license buys you all you can eat. The application runs locally, using your Chrome / Chromium browser, and no account data are sent off-site, other than to authenticate to Google, according to the developer.

The F+MGE will archive text content, photographs, and Communities (by any member), the last is not possible with Google Data Takeout. And there are more features under development which will be available to current users for incremental archive updates as the product is further improved.

Friends+Me has served Google+ users for years, and the endorsements received from people we know and trust play a strong role in our endorsement.

To be clear: we've had no consideration from Friends+Me or developer +Alois Bělaška other than a phenomenal and badly-needed tool, excellent support, and copious information freely provided. We thank him wholeheartedly for all this.

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Yeah. I like the G+ post as well, not just the blog post linked, so click on those three dots ⋯ and expand it...
This is likely the last personal blog post I'll share in this collection as G+ winds down.

It's about talking online.

It talks about the first few proper trolls I've experienced on Twitter. It's about me learning that it's important to behave and communicate online as though we're in a public space, face-to-face.

I don't go into the details of who and why in the post itself - it's a bit more general than that and talks a lot more about my mother and how she got me started in art.

Before I encountered the G+ OSR community, I thought all online places were dark, terrifying jungles, where some troll could run out of nowhere, savage you, and run off - unhurt, unharmed.

Of the people here, +Zak Sabbath was the first person I met to consistently and explicitly articulate a position of respect and decency in online interactions that closely matches what my mother and my grandmother taught me about interactions offline. Don't lie. Don't abuse. Don't accept lies and abuse. Don't be a bystander. But also, if you make a mistake, apologize. Learn. Do better.

Is this hard work?

Yes. It hurts the ego. It is uncomfortable to step back and apologize when we make mistakes or hurt other people. It is uncomfortable to admit fault. It is also uncomfortable to stand up, whether you are the victim or the bystander, and say, "stop. What you are doing is wrong. Why are you doing that? Why are you hurting that person?"

For a long time I tried to protect myself by avoiding conflict and hiding. It didn't work. When I was harassed by my first boss in Switzerland, I was powerless - a migrant in a foreign country, I could be dismissed at will and sent packing. When the second boss of that office in Switzerland, a serial harasser, started to make his mark, attacking one coworker after another. I stood up against him. I failed. Many other employees were silent. The CEO failed to protect me as the board took the abuser's side. In the end, I got out. I was hurt, but proud to have stood up and done something. Even if I failed.

Online, some of us are stronger, others are weaker. Some of us can do more, some of us can do less. But all of us, together, maintaining a respectful community can, indeed, do a lot.

It's ok for us to disagree, even fundamentally. We may have different ideologies and different upbgringings, different goals and different desires. But so long as we stand together for certain standards of behavior and responsibility, we are a good community.

The OSR has seen its share of dramas, there have been very public tiffs and screaming.

But let me be quite clear, it has over all been in my experience the most net positive, respectful, and friendly online community I have ever found.

This was not the work of one person, this was not work evenly distributed, but it was work nonetheless, and good work.

I very much hope we are able to maintain this even after G+ goes down.

Thanks, folks. Whether you're rolling d20s or heretical 3d6s, you're good folks.

P.S. - +K Yani - you asked me to tag you on this!
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Static HTML Google+ Community Archive

If you'd like a static HTML file of the texts of a Google+ Community, then I know a way to do it, if you know your way around the command line and some tools. Feel free to ask me for help.

1. Use the Google+ Exporter to export a community ($20)
2. Take the feed for Blogger file and call it blogger.xml
3. Take my XSLT project and run make
4. Adapt the CSS file to your liking

For example, +Beloch Shrike has the tool and gave me the data for the One Page Dungeon Contest Community. I did the thing and here's the output:


The Google+ Exporter tool:

The XSLT project (still work in progress):

Other Requirements

This requires the xsltproc tool, which you should install using your package manager (GNU/Linux), or some other way...
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I hadn't seen this before!
If you want to see a random stranger's reviews of your one page dungeon contest 2018 entry, I am reviewing every single entry again this year. This is part 1 of 4, the first 40 entries in alphabetic order, from Aaron Reed to Cooper Graetz.

Let me know if there is a link or links you would like me to include alongside your entry review.

See below for the link to Part 2, I don't want to spam the page with links. =D
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I also have a Reddit account but I hardly ever use it, to be honest. It seems like it only does communities that do link-posting, and some forum-like discussions, but I don't enjoy either of these two activities too much, which is why I'm probably not going to move there.
The main drawbacks I see:
1. another data silo where I'll never get my data out
2. it's hard to write my own tools for it
3. I don't like ads
4. seems very cold and unpersonal to me
Alternative Platform Assessments: Reddit

I've been a user since May of 2012, about a year after G+ launched. Since 2013 I've run a "personal subreddit", /r/dredmorbius, largely as a sort-of-bloggy-thing.

Reddit is not everything I'd want, and has several significant shortcomings. It remains an immensely popular and capable group discussions platform, for either public or private groups. *It is likely among the leading options for Google+ Communities looking for alternate locations.*

Reddit is based on subreddits, forums, operated by moderators, ranging from the owner to other sub-mods. The site's own operators are admins, who have powers not available even to moderators.

Users are identified by handles, there is no "real names" policy. Multiple accounts are acceptable, though using these to self-promote, harass others, or otherwise abuse the platform, is not....

6,000 words on the good, the mixed, and the bad.
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2018 was pretty good! We spent two weeks in Sweden.
So, how was 2017? Well, mostly it was a year where all the cancer related shit stopped happening. My wife got better with every month and it was a joy to be there by her side. This is our life:
What else? I discovered Mastodon and moved my micro-blogging there. I don't have 2000 followers or more (but how many of you are still reading?) but it's free software, the API is open (I wrote a command line tool to archive and expire my posts!), and it was not too difficult to find a few interesting people to chat with. It's for RPG stuff and for everything else. And the blog is still up, of course. That's for everything or for just the RPG stuff. And if you need a feed for your Feedly or whatever app you use, try
What else? We spent six weeks in Australia as a reward for making it through the last two years. I took a lot of pictures.
I guess that reminds me that I closed my Flickr account and decided to host all our photos on my own server. If you feel like browsing: lists the other galleries.
Uhm, I guess that's it. I don't post too much about gaming these days because I felt that all the stuff I cared about has already been said. When I read +Harald Wagener's end of year post, I felt much the same.
I still play, offline, face to face: I run three campaigns and have people at my table five times per month. It's a biweekly German campaign, a biweekly English campaign, and a monthly campaign for a good friend and some kids. These campaigns all use my fantasy heartbreaker OSR rules, Halberds & Helmets.
2017 was pretty cool because where as I failed the BX64 challenge which +James V West posted in 2015, I finished the goal I had set myself after some incoherent efforts at writing up my big campaign arc at the time. That just never ends well. All the copyrighted crap you have to excise, all the changes, all the improvisations, it all gets lost anyway. But I wrote my own boring monster manual and illustrated it! And half the images aren't too shabby. I recently showed one or two to players at the table and they gasped. Wights and gnolls, I think. That was nice.
Anyway. Politics still gets me down, I'm still a melancholy person, I'm still happy to have no kids and I still don't understand why environmentalism, the end of the patriarchy and the end of wealth inequality, isn't the absolute top priority of anybody with kids. Here I go again. That's the kind of ranting that makes me gloomy and I don't want it. It's bad enough when I read the newspaper, and I rarely do that these days.
I'm eating cabbage and raw beetroot salad with some einkorn bread, drinking sencha and listening to Rachmaninov's All-Night Vigil, Op. 37, "Verspers". The beautiful music nearly moves me to tears.
2017 was also the year I started buying my own whisky. Not sure whether I should be alarmed. Glenfarclas Cask Strength 105, and Ardberg Uigeadail. Sláinte!
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I've been adding stats and treasure and more stuff to Hex Describe over the holidays. And thinking about treasure types in general, based on all of this. Visit the link, click Submit, and start reading. I don't know about you but even I am sometimes entertained by the stuff it produces.
I'd love to find more people (maybe you?) to collaborate with me to extend this Alpine wilderness in the same vein. Did you know that if you reload it often enough, you'll get a mindflayer lair, too? Look for "squid people".
I'm also interested in getting feedback on how to improve the presentation, in case you have any ideas.
On my profile you'll find a pinned post with links to Mastodon and Diaspora accounts, and to my ❤️ blog ❤️.
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