Drummer OPML Demo

Thursday, October 21, 2021

Connecting Drummer to Gatsby

I've been thinking about how to use Drummer outlines in a static site generator, like Gatsby or Eleventy. They generally generate content from markdown files, so it must be possible to either export OPML to markdown or for the site generator read content directly from OPML.

I found some demo code by Andrew Shell for a Gatsby plugin to generate content from a Little Outliner outline. On a whim I forked it to my own repository and plugged in the URL for a Drummer outline. And it worked! It rendered the basic text of the outline entries, and I was able to deploy the site to Netlify.

Going one step further, on Netlify I set up a build hook for the site, and in Drummer put a script on my Iconbar to send a POST request to the build hook URL. And voilà! I have a build button my for Gatsby test site. It is, of course, a lot slower than OldSchool. 😃

There is of course a lot of work left before this will be usable, but for a beginning I'm pretty happy with it. Thank you Andrew for posting your demo code!

Sunday, September 12, 2021


That German word is literally "experience of success", but a better translation would be "feeling of achievement". And I just had one!

For over 10 years the banking software (that we use for both home and business) on my Mac has used a card reader to authenticate. The reader is so old it has a serial cable with a USB adapter attached. Every time MacOS updates I've been afraid the device will no longer be recognized. More annoying, when we're on the road it's a bulky device to have to pack along, especially for only one purpose.

I should mention that Germany has its own protocol to communicate online with banks (FinTS, formerly known as HBCI). So I can only use German banking software, and my German might be pretty good, reading a 200 page handbook or protocol specification in my second language is a bit of a barrier.

This has bothered me for years, and in the meantime there other ways to authenticate (e.g. using a smartphone to read a generated TAN graphic, used by our bank) that don't involve extra and outdated devices. In fact German law now requires banks to use Two-Factor Authentication (2FA, I guess the card reader still qualifies). But I was afraid of trying to change the authentication method, I was afraid of losing 13 years of banking data that I had on my local machine!

Yesterday I decided to test changing the authentication. I set up a new account with the "photoTAN" authentication, and to my surprise the banking software applied the authentication to my existing account and it just worked! It took just 5 minutes, and now I'm free from my card reader!

So I guess sometimes when you come to a fork in the road you just have to take it!

Saturday, September 11, 2021

Lonesome Day

I could say it feels like only yesterday, but no, that's not true anymore. It now feels longer ago than that, and that's good.

Thanks to blogging I can look up my notes from that day. "I just feel numb. I miss an eloquent President, who can express what I and the nation must feel, but cannot put into words."

We do business in Hamburg-Harburg, just blocks from Marienstrasse 54, where the plot was hatched. It is still creepy to me that this began so (geographically) close to us.

Almost immediately there were many expressions of grief and support from both German officials and ordinary citizens. This led directly to the German military involvement in Afghanistan that started a few weeks later.

Candles placed at the US Consulate in Hamburg, September 2001

Commemorative plaques placed at the US Consulate, September 10, 2021 (Source)


Friday, September 10, 2021

Saturday, September 4, 2021

drummerCMS on localhost

My adventure today has been running drummerCMS on my local Mac. It pretty much worked out of the box.

I git cloned the repository, ran npm install, then started the server with node drummercms.js, and noted it was running on port 1410. I figured the URL to build would be "http://localhost:1410/blog=myTwitterName" and sure enough, it wrote out a data directory and tried to write files to S3 (which failed, of course, because I can't write to the "oldschool.scripting.com" bucket 😂).

Then I had to remember (or look up) how to set up my own S3 bucket for static site hosting and change a couple config variables in drummercms.js

var basePath = "/drummer.papascott.de/" # My bucket name, without a subdirectory for my Twitter name

const appDomain = "drummer.papascott.de" # The domain I've pointed to the bucket

Actually that's probably a stupid name for the domain, since Drummer is the system, not the blog! 😛

And I can view my blog under http://drummer.papascott.de.s3-website-us-east-1.amazonaws.com/ (http://drummer.papascott.de/ doesn't work on my Mac yet, but does on my phone. Must be some weird DNS caching voodoo 🤷‍♂️) (Yep, that's what it was, in my router.)

Note I am not changing any header settings on blog.opml itself. I want Drummer itself to keep working as usual.

Friday, September 3, 2021

Thursday, September 2, 2021

Monday, August 30, 2021