Well I may be an early adopter, but I'm certainly NOT a power user! I know there are some of those, as I used to see their postings in a Fargo River during the days of blogging with Fargo 1. Now some are doing even nicer stuff using the new improved tools of Fargo 2, while I keep it pretty simple, as I'm learning my way around this new software.
Where Are We Going?
I started using Fargo in July 2013. When it broke for blogging purposes, I resisted the urge to find another blogging platform. I waited because I knew Dave was building these tools because he wanted to use them himself! I figured that would mean he wouldn't give up until they were the way he wanted them, which would probably be very conducive to easy blogging. I didn't believe Dave when he apologized and said something like, "Too bad, it can't be fixed." I thought he might find a way.
And here's the key. He always said he wanted to produce a tool that could be easily used by writers. Not writers who were expert programmers, or expert hackers. He always encouraged help and advice from the latter, but he wanted anyone to be able to blog, if they had something they wanted to say. Anyone.
A Giant Leap Forward
In the past couple of weeks, Dave was posting with more and more new features in evidence. He would describe something he wanted to be able to produce. The techies would offer suggestions and sometimes we would see that he had gotten it working. Then on Saturday night (3/15) he announced the new Scripting News, the realization of a lot of these new features in Fargo.
His blog had become a "noteblog" and he has reserved noteblog.org (on 3/7/14) and noteblog.io (on 3/9/2014). Later he described the new format as being for writing that's not full enough to be a blog post, but too full to fit into 140 [characters.]
Before that, a document was discovered that described the new Fargo Bookmarklet and how to use it to easily create a linkblog with Fargo. As Dave said, this is a rarity, "a feature that has been documented but not yet shipped." It's coming in Fargo 1.51. We're on Fargo 1.50 as I write this. These were exciting peeks at what is coming down the pike for us.
Then on Sunday, he told us how to look at the source OPML file for this new, more powerful Fargo, as well as the RSS feed for this new noteblog. It looked far simpler than the OPML file for my first Fargo 1 blog and yet it was doing very cool, even exciting things. Such as giant background images for a day's blogging and links to other sites plopped in so easily with the bookmarklet (as many links as he wanted) but sometimes collapsed under a header line.
Looking back, I found that on 3 March 2014, Dave told us the Twitter rules that he was going to break with Fargo:
I don't have a 140 character limit.
I can have as many links as I want in an item.
I use HTML hyperlinks.
I don't use a URL-shortener.
And in his Celebratory podcast of 17 March 2014, Dave also talked about the fact that Twitter has all the links exposed where anyone can see them, a kind of ugliness they've never bothered to fix. Dave has fixed this in Fargo, which does not show the ugly links, while still providing links that work. It simply hot links from a word or phrase directly to another location on the Internet. This was an innovation back in 1992 that Twitter has not yet adopted!
Sounds good to me!!
On 18 March 2014 Dave reported on how to plop a large background image on an outline page.
And the same day he released Fargo v 1.51 so that people could start building their own linkblog. This is a special version of Fargo to be used just for that purpose. It is not an upgrade of Fargo v1.50 to v1.51. It is a totally separate Fargo to be used for making a linkblog.
And on 21 Mar 2014 Fargo v1.51 was released as an upgrade to v1.50.
Do I have the nerve to try out these two new features? That would be a NO, not yet. I want to clean up the way this outline is published, before venturing out in a new direction.
I'm glad I was patient and didn't spend a lot of time trying to figure out Ghost or WordPress, or even writing in Medium. It looks like the new Fargo with it's panoply of blogging tools will suit me just fine, once I learn how to use them all.
Ron Chester ☺