Forkeys offers more than just your basic timelines and posting capabilities.
One of those extras is Pages, which is really your own playground for creating just about any type of content, long or short form. I’ve seen pages used to go into a deeper introduction, as blogs, FAQs, all kinds of things.
Pages can be private to yourself (create a collection of MFMs or scripts you like to copy/paste into your posts) or public (share with not only your local Forkey friends, but anyone on the internet).
Catodon is calling this “Blogs” now, and for the moment, the functionality is the same. But there are plans to make changes to this in the future!
Forkey Pages are found in the More menu by default, unless you’ve rearranged them.
More > Pages
From here, you most likely can see three tabs:
|Pages that get a lot of views on the local instance.
|Pages that you liked / favorited show up here
|This is where your own pages SHOULD appear.
Viewing a Page
All pages have a similar structure.
- Banner at the top
- Content in the middle of some kind
- Footer with options to like or share (strangely with a boost icon).
Some pages have banners, or blue colored background if none uploaded.
The title of the page will appear inside the banner area, so it’s best to choose a neutral color for the graphic that will contrast against your title nicely.
In addition, two icons appear if you aren’t the author:
- Copy URL: Yep, allows you to copy the URL to the page.
- View Source: You can view the “source” of the page. In this case, not the HTML but the configuration screens themselves so you can see how they set it up.
The author will see the following icons as well:
- Edit Page: Only appears for the original author
- Pin to Profile: Only appears for the original author
Pages consist of the following:
|Title, Description, custom url, public or private page toggle, thumbnail settings
|Sections of text, images, posts, etc.
|Lots of things in here, but we’re going to focus on variables and AiScript variables
|A place to write AiScript that will can then provide content on your page.
These are broken down into various tabs.
View Source allows you to view the Page configuration of any page, not just your own. A bit of an oddity here, when you’re viewing someone else’s page, it appears as a form, as if you would be able to make changes to someone else’s page! But the save button is missing, so it’s really not possible. This may or may not be fixed depending on your Forkey of choice.
Jump over to the Content tab (the second one), and here’s something I just found out recently! If you view source > content of one of your own pages OR someone elses, there is a “Duplicate” button. Click it, and the entire page configuration gets copied over to your OWN profile as a new page. For my developer friends, it’s basically forking the code. 🍴 Unfortunately, there’s no notifications built in to let you know when someone duplicates your page.
This opens up some really interesting concepts. We could create templates for others to utilize. For example, I could create some AiScript code to include in a page to make it do something cool. Someone else could just duplicate that page, not have to worry about how to setup the page or how to write the code. Lots to think about here.
If you open a page, you’ll see whatever content the user has created, and at the bottom, you’ll see several types of interactions.
Like the page Let the creator know you appreciate it the page, but also makes this page appear in your “Liked Pages” tab
Boost Icon: Share with Post I think this is supposed to open a post dialog with a link to the page, but it doesn’t seem like it’s working. You can still post, but you’ll need to manually copy the page url to share it.
Follow You can see a short author profile and related actions, and even follow the author (not the page) from here. This appears both at the top and bottom of the page.
This seems to show other pages the author recently worked on. Click through to view them.
Variables and Scripts
I do not recommend using these as the future of AiScript in Forkeys is uncertain. Don’t waste your time here when it may not even work a few months down the line.
In general, you declare variables of different kinds on the variables page. I have only ever used AiScript Variable type. The name you provide for the variable is what you will use to display the results in your content text areas. But you have to provide yet another name for the same variable that will be referenced from your Script tab. Confusing!
The script tab is AiScript. This is where you can do just about whatever you want, and then display the results back to the end user. Figure out WHAT to do is the hurdle and let me tell you, debugging AiScript is a bear.
I have a love/hate relationship with AiScript. I studied it pretty extensively, and you can do some cool things with it - really fun stuff and even some useful things. I even built a catalog of plugins and a way to build your own simple snippet plugins!
But AiScript’s future in the Forkeys isn’t so bright. Sharkey has followed Misskey’s lead and removed it from Pages. It’s available in another area called Play over there in a different form. Catodon is going to remove AiScript from the platform as a whole.
Things that don’t seem to work
Great news! It appears in the latest versions of Firefish, Sharkey and Catodon, these issues have been resolved. I’m still seeing the issue on IceShrimp, but might just be my instance.
As stated above, your experience may vary, depending on the platform you chose and the current version. There are fixes out there in the latest versions of Firefish.
- Sections - You can add a section, but you can’t add sub-items to the section like you should be able to.
- IF blocks - You can add an if block, but you can’t add sub-items to the section like you should be able to. Embedded Posts
- Posting Form - so, it works - but the user can’t edit the content. You can throw content in there from a variable or from what they entered on the page. The send button does work. You can’t set the visibility of the post tho. It’s just public.
I have a feeling pages are going to be changing quite a bit over the next year. There’s discussion of making them federated, similar to a Wordpress Blog. I DO think it would be a good feature to keep, out of all the other fun niche things (galleries, MFM, etc.)
I hope other Forkeys take a similar turn and focus on revamping this area. Right now, Pages are not widely used.
Love it or lose it!