INTRODUCING "My Steemit Library" - ...A ~Better~ Way to Steemit...

in steemit •  2 years ago

"When I was young, we couldn't afford much. But, my library card was my key to the world."
- John Goodman -

This article is about the history, function, technology, and future of @creatr's Steemit Library.

It didn't take long.

I'd only been on Steemit a month or two before it became obvious to me that the default Steemit User Interface (UI) is the pits.

The way the UI works is completely at odds with the archival qualities of the blockchain technology Steemit is built on.

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On Steemit,

you are only as good as your last article. And if your readers follow more than a dozen content creators, don't expect they'll see it. Your article has already scrolled off their feed.

As a writer here for the long haul, I find this unacceptable. I want my readers to have easy access to all my content. The payout window may have slammed shut, but my writing still has intrinsic value.

Library History

I began developing The Library last November. You can see the first version here:

"A -Periodic Table of Contents- My Blog, circa November, 2016"

I added articles as they were written, but because of the 30-day "edit window," I had to re-issue the library about once a month. You can see subsequent revisions here, here, and here.

February's Library was the last release.

This is because with the release of Hard Fork 17, we were supposed to be able to go back and edit older articles. You can read the entire sad story of that debacle in the "COMPLAINT DEPARTMENT" on the Library's Steemit Shelf. The library has not been updated since the end of February...

Until now, that is.

Welcome to My new and improved Steemit Library. I have been ~prototyping~ A "Topical Hierarchical Table of Contents," and it is now "open for business."

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About The New Library

This week I published a prototype of my latest "vision" for a Steemit Library. My Library provides convenient access to all my Steemit articles. The Library is a "Steemit Overlay." I am using Steemit itself as a tool to make my articles more accessible to my readers.

How the Library Works

If you click on @creatr's "Website Link" (at the top/middle of the @creatr blog page) you will open my Top Level Library post. You can also CLICK HERE, or on any image in the body of this article.

The "top-level Library file" is a graphic list of "shelves" or Library Topics, with a brief description of each. If you click on a Topic Shelf, you will be taken to an index of all articles related to that topic. From there, clicking on an article title will take you to that article.

When you are on a Library Topic page, you can simply use your browser "Back" button, or you can click on any image to return to the Top Level Library page.

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On the "Re-Shelving" shelf at the bottom,

there are also a few links to miscellaneous individual articles.

All Library images are either CC0 Public Domain or original images by @creatr. Within articles, specific images may be credited to their owners under other licenses, or noted as "fair use."

Please, give it a try!

My ultimate aim is for you, my readers, to be able to "drill down" and find articles on whatever topic may be of interest, without having to scroll through my endless, linear Steemit UI front page.

Library Technology

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At this point, the tech is very simple. The Library consists of one Steemit file for the Top Level index and a file for each Topic Shelf.

I'm also using a redirection service,, to deal (at least in part) with the present problem of non-editable Steemit files. If and when I have to replace a Steemit file, I can change the link pointer at Rebrandly. I consider Rebrandly a "short-term" solution. Ideally, someone will develop a Steemit blockchain based Short URL / Redirection service.

I am using a hybrid of Markdown and HTML within each file. If you want to try this yourself, you can "see how it's done" by using @ausbitbank's awesome SteemViz tool to look at the Library files.

The Future of The Library is partly up to you.

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I want to know what you think of the whole idea, as well as the layout, selection of tags, and anything else that you think may be helpful.

I hope to develop some more automated tools for gathering and compiling the indices. I also expect that, as articles "pile up," I will go beyond the present "two levels" of content into Library Sub-Topics.

Of course, I desperately need to be able to edit my files in perpetuity. Without that, this set of Library files will become a checkpoint, a "proof of concept" exercise.

Are you a Steemit developer?

Please restore our ability to edit our old files. Creators need to have control over their own creations.

Are you a Steemit user?

Please help me lobby Steemit to give us our EDIT button back!

Once I can edit older posts, I will be able to keep this project Up To Date on a regular, rather than occasional, basis.

If you like this idea,

please visit @creatr's blog and support all the library files with your votes.

If you want me to be able to keep the Library up to date:

Please do whatever you can to persuade Steemit Inc. and the Steemit developers to allow us to edit our older posts. Final adoption of this tool will depend on when the Steemit "Powers That Be" enable us to edit our own work beyond the present seven day window.

Won't you please help lobby them to make that possible ASAP?

I'm happy to answer any questions.

Please leave your comment or question below. The next time the librarian is in, you will receive an answer.

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LOOK! Check out our amazing product:

Thanks for your time and attention.
You are why I'm here on Steemit!
I have very eclectic interests and hope, over time, to write about them all.

⬇️To Check Out @creatr's World⬇️CLICK Each Image Below⬇️

@creatr @creatr @creatr
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I really like your idea! I'd been considering the whole notion of building an "archive" of my posts... as I looked into the "how" I got a little frustrated with some of the limitations of Steemit-- most specifically, one I addressed in one of my earliest posts:

If Steemit is on the blockchain, the the blockchain is this amazing tool that enables us to permanently record things in perpetuity... then why is the site not set up to be more oriented towards "evergreen" content? Seems contradictory, somehow... all the emphasis is on "right now," and after that, pretty much "forget it."

You've done an amazing amount of work setting up your library files-- I'm super impressed with that; shame that the editing ability will run out so soon.

I guess it's time to talk to as many witnesses and developers as possible about this particular issue... and explain WHY it's a good thing to extend editing.


Hi, friend!

Thank you so very much for your very positive and comprehensive feedback on this one... :D

I hope you'll poke around my Library and both find some older "good stuff" as well as "get a feel" for how it works. In the future, I will probably go to additional levels, though right now there are only two.

"shame that the editing ability will run out so soon."

Yes, any influence you may have with developers that could lead to the long-promised editability would be very much appreciated. For the moment, I will at least have a "proof of concept" showpiece that captures the current content of my Library. And I am planning another article with extensive WHYs as to all the reasons we need to be able to edit in perpetuity...

Longer term plans include learning how to do blockchain programming myself, and building some tools that will make creating my Library considerably more automated... ;)

Thanks again! You rock! ;)



All caugh up again, shame these cant stay at the top instead off moving down your page