A feed aggregator that only polls feeds when they've been updated.

Björn Wärmedal 41dd8638ff URLs should not be unquoted. 5 days ago
.gitignore 83ad6e0c75 WIP -- functionality implemented, not integrated 2 weeks ago
LICENSE d8e07d5227 Initial commit 10 months ago
README.md a70bb81603 Fixed README 10 months ago
URLHelper.py 41dd8638ff URLs should not be unquoted. 5 days ago
antennaDB.py 82eae3918b Removed all queue-related code, as it is now obsolete. 1 week ago
customFilters.py 706ef88525 Fixed odd bug in customfilters 3 months ago
direct-ingestion.py fe72d5cfca Fixed CGI output 2 weeks ago
example.conf 83ad6e0c75 WIP -- functionality implemented, not integrated 2 weeks ago
multiFeedParsing.py e82eb50c3c Collapsing whitespace everywhere needed in XML feeds 3 months ago
pageGeneration.py 5c82bea0d8 Biiiig integration for direct ingestion 2 weeks ago
prunefilters.sh c24e554e1b Added tool to remove unused filters 2 months ago
signoffs.py 519452ef40 Fixed a typo in signoffs, added a few more. 3 months ago

README.md

Antenna - Receiving Transmissions from Geminispace

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 ANTENNA

This is a feed aggregator with a twist. It doesn't have a list of feeds that it repeatedly checks. Instead it takes feed URLs as user input, and checks newly submitted feeds every few minutes. No more useless hammering of dead feed files.

  • You write a post on your gemlog.
  • Your atom/RSS/gemsub feed updates.
  • You call gemini://[domain and path to submission script]?[URL to your feed]
  • A few minutes later Antenna fetches your feed and lists your entries.

Background

Most gemlogs live only a brief life, or post seldom and irregularly. A common feed aggregator relies on the consumer to curate a list of feeds, all of which will be fetched again and again and again at some interval. Few of them (most of the time none of them) have any new entries since last check. Some disappear, causing timeouts. I find this incessant blind polling a waste of resources.

This became very apparent when Solderpunk decided that the central CAPCOM installation should no longer poll every feed it knew of, but only a random subset of 100 of them each month. At the time of this writing, CAPCOM looks like a ghost town.

I believe that a better way to aid discoverability in any community is to let publishers push their content to where people are looking for it. And the gemini community is not yet too large for a central hub of information.

Preparation

Antenna runs on python3 and mostly uses modules available in core. Two exceptions I remember are feedparser and sqlite3. Please tell me if you try to run this and run into any undocumented requirements.

The current code base makes a few assumptions that may or may not be true for your system:

  • That there are two folders in the same directory named antenna and public_gemini, respectively.
  • That the user which runs the queuefeeds.py script has both read and write access to the SQLite3 database and the folder antenna, which the database file will be in.
  • That there are files about.gmi, log, and submit in the public_gemini folder, because the generated page will link to them.

My setup is a useful referense. It looks like this:

~antenna/
    |
    +--- antenna/
    |       |
    |       +--- README.md
    |       +--- LICENSE
    |       +--- antennaDB.py
    |       +--- ingestfeeds-wrapper.sh
    |       +--- queuefeed.py
    |       +--- ingestfeeds.py
    |       +--- antenna.log
    |       +--- antenna.sqlite
    |       +--- blocklist.txt
    |
    +--- public_gemini/
            |
            +--- index.gmi
            +--- about.gmi
            +--- submit
            +--- log

Nothing outside of ~antenna/public_gemini/ is publicly reachable. The file about.gmi is a handwritten file about my instance. The index.gmi file is generated by Antenna. The two scripts log and submit change the working directory to ~antenna/antenna/ and then runs tail -n 50 antenna.log and ./queuefeed.py respectively.

Installation

Clone this repo:

git clone https://notabug.org/tinyrabbit/gemini-antenna.git antenna

Enter the catalogue and create a database:

cd antenna
python3
> import antennaDB
> antennaDB.AntennaDB.createDB()

Make sure that the user that executes the queuefeeds.py script has read and write permissions to the directory antenna as well as antenna/antenna.sqlite.

Create a cron job that runs the ingestfeeds.py via the wrapper (substitute for whichever user should run the ingest job, and which directory the ingestfeeds-wrapper.sh is in):

sudo echo "*/10 * * * * antenna /home/antenna/antenna/ingestfeeds-wrapper.sh" > /etc/cron.d/antenna-ingestion

If there are any specific domains you'd like to block from publishing to your Antenna, please fill them in (one on each line) in a file named blocklist.txt, one URL per line and all starting with gemini:// or other scheme and separator, depending on what you'd like to block.

Contributing

  • Be kind, humble and open-minded in discussions.
  • Send pull requests or submit issues here, or contact me directly with suggestions/feedback/thoughts/bug reports: bjorn.warmedal@gmail.com or ew0k@tilde.team.