The Need for Smarter Clients

isotopp image Kristian Köhntopp -
September 18, 2023
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Somebody asked me very politely on the Fedi:

Would you please post all but the first post in a thread as “unlisted”?

I like to follow you, but the sum of all posts by you takes up so much space on my front page.

The answer to that request, also politely, is a firm “No.”

Selection, ordering and presentation of posts is a client problem, which it has to solve, according to your configured preferences.

Of course, my client (Tusky) recognizes a thread and shows it as such.

But all posts that are being sent as “public” are also shown separately on my front page.

That is an understandable problem, but not mine.

I believe Tusky will also show you reposts of the same article by 17 different persons. In total, you get to see 18 copies of that article (the original and 17 copies). Would you ask these people to not repost because another of your followers already did that? You would not.

Tusky, and every other client must learn what it has shown previously, and to not show middle posts of threads if so desired.

If we start to take care of recipient presentation preferences on the sender’s side, we are getting into an impossible situation. The sum of all recipients has irreconcilable preferences.

Also, we would end up in a “USENET-situation,” where advancement becomes impossible. “No Umlauts, because my VT100 can’t render them.”

I can’t and won’t ever care for any client’s presentation preferences. Get a client that can render stuff the way you want, and pay your client developers of choice to build the client you want.

This network is federated, with dozens of clients. This offers you choice and makes it impossible for me to care for you all. If you don’t like this, please unsubscribe to my account. The network is large, and you won’t miss my content.

Thanks.

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