New Project: WP-Gistpen

Where I hosted my data online used to not really be an issue for me; in fact, for a long time, I really wanted to get as much of my online “stuff” (documents, contacts, calendar, email, etc.) in a single location1. Since the NSA revelations we’ve all heard about, we know for a fact that our data isn’t safe in the hands of large corporations like Facebook. We should be establishing digital spaces where we’re fully in control of our own data.

This is the reason I use WordPress; I own my own data, my writing is in a portable, reusable format, and I decide what information I put into and pull out of my space. Some space you control should be the center of your online identity, and I know WordPress, so that’s the space I’m building on. I’m thinking of what external online services I can replace with WordPress.

That’s the inspiration behind WP-Gistpen.

I’m looking to replicate Gist’s functionality with embeddable code snippets.2 Integrating the Gistpen’s creation process into your writing process will make it easier to write blog posts with code snippets instead bouncing between multiple sites.

Only the core functionality is done, but it’s as much as I’m able to complete so far. The cooler features will have to wait, unfortunately.

Check it out and let me know what you think of it.

Tomorrow, I’ll explain how I added the button and created the pop-up modal for TinyMCE.


  1. Google, basically. I mostly accomplished it too, though I rarely use them for social networking, but they even have my music library. Certainly not “everything,” but more than I wish I had, sometimes. Great, single point-of-failure for my online life. 

  2. I’m at least aware of the fact that it’s a little ironic to speak in big terms about owning your own online space while my contribution is very focused on a small group of people, but I’m building this first because the core of it seems within my skillset while the bigger ideas would teach me a lot. There are definitely a lot of possible ways to make owning your own space easier. 

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This post is part of the following threads: Privacy & Surveillance, Project: WP-Gistpen - ongoing stories on this site. View the thread timelines for more context on this post.