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Show HN: Able – an alternative to Medium (able.bio)
248 points by new_here 17 days ago | hide | past | web | favorite | 134 comments



Just roll your own blog already. If there's one thing these services reinforce over and over again - it's that they'll change their terms over time.

Own your site. Own your data. Put it all on your own terms.

If you need help setting one up (unlikely for this crowd), you can have one made for you for free here.

https://StartABlog.com/free-blog


Agree that everyone should have their own site but we just want to create another corner on the web where you can read and write interesting, well presented content and find jobs etc.

You're also welcome to cross-post to Able to help build an audience to your blog too. One thing we don't want to do is bait and switch users like other venture funded companies have done recently. We just want to build a good community and charge businesses to advertise jobs to good people.

I understand your skepticism though, hopefully over time we can prove that not everyone has to play that game.

You can read more about our intentions and business model here: https://able.bio/about


I would encourage you to release this under a free software license like GPL. People are increasingly skeptical of "platforms" and proprietary licensing.


The Affero GPL is especially suitable for hosted computing and services: https://www.gnu.org/licenses/agpl-3.0.en.html


>People are increasingly skeptical of "platforms" and proprietary licensing.

And with people you mean ... ? The general public (i.e. "people") don't really care much about their privacy.


This is great advice for those who don't want discoverability. However, for everyone else, Medium going to the dark side was a huge pain because there was no alternative. They had a monopoly on the "write articles and get discovered" market.

Maybe some here don't care about discoverability, but most writers do.

To Able: thank you so much for trying to fill this void. I would recommend that you not focus solely on developer content and hit the casual crowd. We already have options for the tech savvy that work well, and none for casuals. Medium was the only good option for that. Features like the table of contents are nice for technical content, but an eyesore for casual content.


> hit the casual crowd

Forget the casual crowd. First reason: It’s always good to start with one demography and fulfilling their requirements. Second and TBH, the casual crowd sucks steel when creating short-form blog content.

Go to the Linkedin blogs, all non-tech Medium blogs, TED talks, Facebook: 99% is useless, already seen, self-help-type advice covered with click-baity titles.

Every Reddit post has more substance and authenticity than the mentioned above.

Edit: To the pro downvoters, instead of downvoting just reply and link to one eg. single useful non-tech Linkedin blog.


> all non-tech Medium blogs

> link to one eg. single useful non-tech Linkedin blog

I agree with the first part of your comment. Narrowing the focus to a specific demo makes it far easier to provide exactly what your target audience needs, thus a higher quality product/service.

But I have doubts about the second part. You're classifying everything in 2 categories, "tech" and "non-tech" (I assume non-IT here) so this particular thing or absolutely everything else all in one bag. How qualified are you to judge the dozens of non-tech fields out there, say psychology, economics, marine biology, or agriculture? Is this a bit of (reverse?) Gell-Mann amnesia effect where you can accurately judge a tech blog on LinkedIn as being good but when it comes to something outside of your field of expertise you assume low quality?


If we expand "tech" to mean "technical" rather than "technology", those statements become much more likely to be true. People who have skills in some sort of technical background seem much more likely to have interesting insights than people who do not. HN loves to post Slate Star Codex, for example, and I doubt most here have the skills in psych to effectively evaluate his writings as correct.


> much more likely

Maybe but when you go from a very low likelihood to begin with increasing it even 10 fold might not make a practical difference.

The point was any one of us here can accurately judge content on a handful of topics in our areas of expertise and to a lesser extent in connecting fields. But we can say next to nothing outside of that. Let alone generalize to "all" platforms and "99%" of content. It's not "tech"/"non-tech" but "what I know"/"what I don't know".

> interesting insights

How would one even realize this if they're an expert web developer reading a blog on astronomy? Every single article on a platform could be either gold or shiny manure and most of us wouldn't really tell the difference unless they solidly overlap with those topics mentioned above.


You are def right that I should not pack everything in a non-tech cluster and call it crap. However I'd still keep my initial statement, it's a simplicatiom but it's true.

Of course there are and must be great blogs in non-tech areas but they are not that many. Writing high quality blogs for free seems not be common in other fields. Often people rather publish the findings in a protected space, call it academic paper and I can read just a lousy abstract. Actually most academic non-tech fields fall in this category.


Your second statement might more accurately be formulated as "I tend to find the insights of people with a technical background more interesting", or even "I am more capable of understanding what is interesting about the insights of people with some sort of technical background even if it is not my own." Otherwise, you're claiming that there's something objectively "uninteresting" about, like, the majority of human insights that civilizations have ever had and found valuable.


Are there any marine biology blogs on LinkedIn?


Focus is great, but fluff exists everywhere. Tech and non-tech alike (although there are far more sub divisions...). Even tech.


Discoverability isn't real.

It's a term people use when they want to abdicate their marketing efforts.

Whether you use your own platform or build on someone else's - discoverability almost never "just happens." People put a ton of work into being discovered "organically."


Medium is absolute garbage for discovery. Worthless trash.

My typical post on Medium got 5,000 to 10,000 views. I’ve had a few break 100k. Medium provided roughly zero views. All my views came from Reddit, HN, Twitter, or Google.

If you’re using Medium for discovery you’re wasting your time.


I started my blog thinking "at most 10 people will actually keep up with this".

It's a little frustrating to have low traffic levels -- everyone wants to be famous and loved by millions -- but as it turns out I know my handful of readers on Twitter and it's a fruitful interaction. OTOH I'd be constantly trying to tune my writing to please a mass undifferentiated audience. I'd sound like kdnuggets or some such. Life is too short for that.


Good content finds its readers itself.


Personal blogging and discover-ability are reconcilable: why doesn't someone build an aggregator where people can submit their essays and write-ups with RSS feeds?


> Maybe some here don't care about discoverability, but most writers do.

Could you syndicate?

For programming topics, I've done that with DZone for years.


Use Ghost. It's self-hosted and gives all the functionality you need for beginners and advanced users alike.

Running it on https://sdan.xyz/blog and it's fantastic. I get RSS/subscriptions (https://sdan.xyz/subscribe)/podcasts/a whole plethora of integrations super easily.

And since it's self hosted, you don't need to worry about it ever going down (unlike if Able.bio ever does).

Also, Lighthouse gives Ghost blogs top scores as well :).


You can even make your deployment easier by using a static site generator like Hugo.


Ghost also supports creating static sites, although I haven't gone that route.

Hugo is a valid option though!


I was super impressed by how fast your blog loaded, but then I got caught in some sort of loop on this page [1], which won’t load.

1: https://blog.suryad.com/datascience/


Also appreciate your comments on how fast it can load! I've been vehemently working on load times across all my websites for over a year now.

Working on a blog post on how I could reduce load times and make it portable, scalable, and reliable (the server itself).

Thanks for the feedback!


My bad! Made this post a while back and I used 10+ repl.it embedded editors.

Although it does seem to load eventually, I should update it to use some better editor that loads faster!


I disagree. Use your time to setup something smarter than a blog. A turn-key ready static site generator still takes 10x the time to set up than just using a random blog site.

Also, you waste time fiddling with CSS adjusting crappy themes. Only upside would be post editing in vim.

But again, do something smarter, too many new shiny toys wait for you: Tensorflow, Haskell, Rust, ESP32... extend the list yourself.


Agree.

Switching from wordpress to a static site generator has made it much harder to post for me. Sure I can use vim (or my editor of choice) but on wordpress I could post from any browser on any machine, even a phone or tablet, including images with sites that have a front end. I'm not going back but I'd post more if I had a front end like I had on wordpress. Note: IMO as a middle solution just using github is not enough. Yes I can create a new file from the interface but no preview, clunky image uploading, clucky image embedding, and other issues.


Bonus: wordpress.com has some (limited, but nonzero) "discoverability". Blogs can be "followed" so you can have an idea of which are the 15-50 people who look at your stuff week in, week out.


I think part of the point of platforms like medium is that you don't have to pay for the costs in case your blog gets hugged a lot.

That startablog.com thing is terrible does bad and very expensive recommendations, recommend expensive services, and then asks you to pay themselves to build a blog for you that will rely on all these services with no guarantee for a large price.

If that's what starting a blog looks like I think I'll start recommending people to Medium or Able now.


There are a lot of blog hosting platforms. The most popular is Wordpress (which, yes, needs a database back end), whose source code can be downloaded at https://wordpress.org/download/source/

One way to create a static site is with GatsbyJS: https://github.com/gatsbyjs/gatsby Or Jekyll: https://github.com/jekyll/jekyll


For the less-technical crowd, you can put markdown files in a Gitlab repo. You don't even have to know how to use Git. You can create and edit files without leaving the website.


This is the Gitlab Web Editor or whatever it's called right?


This is so true, Medium started paywalling free content a couple of months ago. This means people leading on your blog, wanting to read your content and being prevented to do so unless they pay Medium.


> Firefox gets first-class support and is the primary browser we test in.

Wow. I would not have believed to ever read something like this for any service, ever again.


When I do frontend work I always work in Firefox [0]. I think once we caught something that didn’t work in other browsers.

That happens all the time it seems with those who work in a certain other browser. Why? I can’t say for certain, I guess it is because that other browser doesn’t care as muvh about web standards but there might also be some part that has to do with most users of that other browser not caring too much about the web ecosystem.

[0]: I always do that anyway hehe, it is my not-so-secret research tool ;-)


I'm always glad to see competition in any space - especially anything that can keep the big boys (Medium!) in check. Kudos to you for giving this a shot!

Although, while i wish you plenty of luck, the only way you're going to get my money is if/when you think about functions and features supporting things like POSSE or even better yet ActivityPub. The last few years have taught me that I'm not going to spend my money on organizations that don't align with my values of wanting more decentralization. If organization X helps foster more indie web concepts, then I'll happily pay. If you don't support decentralization, then I'll pass, thank you very much.

By all means, please don't receive this as a slight to your service - i do honestly wish you luck. Take this simply as a signal from a potential customer clearly informing you of what services and features that i'm (gladly!) willing to pay.

Again, best of luck with you venture!!


Thanks for the feedback! We're busy working on RSS imports right now and should have something up in a day or two. We're open to ActivityPub too but this might take a bit longer just because we're building Able in our spare time.

Ultimately, we want to create a great place for developers and then charge businesses to advertise their job vacancies to that community. Because we're self-funded we don't have pressure to grow at all costs but we'll need the support from the developer community if we want to turn this into a sustainable business.


That's great to hear! And, acknowledged on the activitypub likely taking a bit of time to roll out. That area is still new enough for many people. But again good to hear you're heading in the right direction! Cheers!


It sounds like what you want is https://writefreely.org/ ? they have both a hosted option and a self-hostable open source version. The missing part is the discoverability that Medium had and that Able and dev.to are working towards, so I don't think it's totally comparable. Actually, saying that now, I'd love it if it even went one way--so I could choose to post my article on my write freely blog, but also syndicate it out to Able. (even if I didn't use the Able editor to publish out to ActivityPub and Able to host all the APIs for that) Might be simpler.


Thanks for this reminder! And the more options that exist in this area the better. Also I like your idea of leveraging writefreely and Able, etc. Thanks for sharing!


RSS support is nice - even better would be if they were also exposed in the metadata [1] so that my feed extension can autodetect it.

    <link rel="alternate" type="application/rss+xml" href="http://example.com/feed" />
[1] https://developer.mozilla.org/en-US/docs/Archive/RSS/Getting...


Great tip, will definitely add that!


Thanks!


This has now been added to user profiles and posts.


Able looks promising: Higher information density than Medium, syntax highlighting in code blocks, no big-ass modal interrupting when I just want to read a silly blog post.

Besides, Medium in its current state is one of the most annoying sites and I don't get why it enjoys such a strong SERP ranking. I mean blog posts are a commodity and Medium thinks they are Netflix showing the latest Disney property.

If Google search devs read this: Demote all Medium results.


High SERP ratings come from multiple things:

1. If you use Google signed in, they know (I assume) you preference technical material (which is the bucket Medium falls in)

2. On-site links; one of the most powerful (and underutilized methods of SEO) is interlinking pages on a site. I'm not sure why this is the case, but it can be a determining factor in top-ranked sites (see Wikipedia as the canonical example of onsite linking).

3. Inbound links; lots of people link to Medium content. If Medium uses Google's tracking tools, Google has a good idea of the inbound traffic and can adjust based on the site's popularity.

None of this has to do with user experience. Unfortunately.

I'm sure there is more (like page load times, how information is organized in the HTML, etc.) that factors in, but these are the ones that occurred to me.


Page load time should include the time it takes to clear away the nag screen before you can see the content. That is easily 2000ms for most people.


[flagged]


You asked why. I answered. I don't think that merits a personal attack.

As for modals, that's UI. Google's algorithm doesn't care that I've seen.


Apologies for the attack, couldn’t resist. However, what you wrote is common sense and you should assume that anyone lurking around on HN knows that stuff. I mean you actually described the page rank algorithm which was the foundation of Google but there are many more signals nowadays. So your post felt like a (small) attack too.

FYI, Google runs quite a large spam team which flags scammy sites manually. Sites with such a modal are usually rather on the spammy side of life and gets flagged by the team. If you get too many flags you get severe penalties slowly eating your traffic in a way that it’s not clearly obvious and it can take years to recover.

But since it’s Medium such UI seems to be tolerated.

If I ran that team I would have killed Medium's, Quora's and Pinterest's search traffic. And soon maybe StackOverflows as well.


> So your post felt like a (small) attack too.

Certainly not my intent. I come across stuff like GGP and I have a gut reaction "Oh! I know a thing! Here, see what I know?! I am helpful!"

I do this occasionally at work, too: where I explain something fundamental to people who have been doing the work for 20+ years.

Part of it is that I'm reinforcing my mental model, and part is I'm trying to be helpful. I suppose this can come across as patronizing or insulting. That's never my intent. I try not to assume what people do or don't know, because I don't know quite a lot and the asides that people make are super helpful to me (especially in fields that I know nothing about).


All good and thanks for the explanation. I was def a bit grumpy and you really wanted just to help.


The oauth2 requirements for twitter signup are quite aggressive.

* See Tweets from your timeline (including protected Tweets) as well as your Lists and collections.

* See your Twitter profile information and account settings.

* See accounts you follow, mute, and block.

* Follow and unfollow accounts for you.

* Update your profile and account settings.

* Post and delete Tweets for you, and engage with Tweets posted by others (Like, un-Like, or reply to a Tweet, Retweet, etc.) for you.

* Create, manage, and delete Lists and collections for you.

* Mute, block, and report accounts for you.

* See your email address.


Apologies, we’ll tighten that up. We only want social auth to streamline onboarding.


Cool. I assumed it was unintentional. Once you do that I'm in.


Give us 24 hours. Will reply once it’s sorted.


Permissions have been fixed.


What functionality does Able provide for technical bloggers who want to do POSSE? Can users import draft articles from their site's RSS feed, for example?

Also, have you given any thought to integrating with the Fediverse by implementing ActivityPub?


We're definitely keen to do both of these things when our time/resources permit. What would be the first step you'd like to see here?


Doing RSS Import first might be easier than ActivityPub and help writers get content onto the site faster.


Cool, we're busy working on RSS importing now. Should be up in a day or two.


I wrote elsewhere that even if you don't do ActivityPub publishing, being able to import from the ActivityPub 'article' type would be a nice feature. I don't know if people have played with that kind of one-way AP integration much, but it'd be neat.


what is POSSE?


Publish on your Own Site Syndicate Elsewhere.


ActivityPub would be an awesome alternative for sharing and commenting.


It's always seemed odd to me that there isn't a hosted service with a headless web/mobile CMS, compiling to a static site, that saves to a few common backends (s3, etc.), with reasonable pricing (i.e. not $10+/mo). Let the user pay for their own storage.


Gitlab does that for free, with free storage. Just fork any of the existing example projects: https://gitlab.com/pages


Whenever I've looked at Gitlab/GH pages, Netlify, etcetera in the past I haven't found a good web/mobile CMS to use with them. Most pro options are too expensive for a personal blog. However ellinokon's suggestion for Siteleaf looks promising.


Are you saying that you didn't find one example out of the 20 examples they provide on the link i posted (octopress, nanoc, pelican, hyde, hexo, hugo, jekyll, metalsmith, vuepress, plain-html ...) that supports mobile, nor has a mobile compatible theme available ? The gitlab pages option is free even with a custom domain and https.


I don't mean a mobile compatible theme, but a CMS mobile app to edit and create content. So something like Netlify CMS and Siteleaf.


Netlify is exactly that with Gatsby, I have two blogs running on them.

Many themes have now deploy to Netlify buttons:

https://github.com/netlify-templates/gatsby-starter-netlify-...

Many themes support https://www.contentful.com/ as a backend.

The only thing that's a little concerning to me is the separation of domains: Hosting on a freemium service which deploys me a Node/React based static site generator that can connect to a third party headless CMS. That's why I still use markdown as the source of the content.

Too many moving parts, but at the same time if one goes down for good, I can fix it quite easily.


Doesn't several services like this exist already? Siteleaf should somewhat fit the bill. Webhook, now defunct, also did something similar.


Use Ghost. It's amazing. Using it with Docker (writing a post how to do this super easily) and it works flawlessly. The editing interface is unreal. Just run it on any instance you can (DO has instances that are $5 a month, or any server you already have running).

Hosting it on https://sdan.xyz/blog actually.


This is actually a really cool idea.


If you don’t feel comfortable with the reliability of “free” business models, check out https://etch.blog which is only $11/year for an awesome, no-nonsense blog (and newsletter). We’re committed to providing the best blogging experience at the best price, forever. We’re also committed to the open web with RSS support and Webmention comments in the pipeline.

Fantastic to see Medium competition. I've been so frustrated with "let's make it official"-esque messages. Best of luck - I will be using you!


Thanks so much for your support. We hope it becomes a useful place for the community. Always keen to hear feedback.


Some pages have horizontal scrollbar on my mobile firefox, such as this https://able.bio/DavidLandup/password-encoding-with-spring-s...

Also, why .bio? Sounds like biotech web site.


I assume it's bio as in short for biography, which can be fitting in the context of a blogging platform. This was at least my first thought upon seeing the domain, and I didn't make any association with biology, biotech, etc. until I saw your comment.


Thanks, will fix that.

> Also, why .bio? Sounds like biotech web site.

Because we couldn't afford the .com and .io wouldn't sell. So we had to get creative. The idea is that your able bio can be found at able.bio/username


Cool, just the other day I was looking for a place to quickly paste the longish top comment from the "who wants to get fired" thread [1] in order to be able to read it reasonably formatted. I've published the story here and given the original author control:

https://able.bio/throwthrowthrowyourboat/my-grand-ulcer-name...

[1] https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=21141785


OMG, I feel an ulcer developing just from reading that story. Thanks for posting!

Reminds me of that 2 million LOC monstrosity someone once commented on an ASK HN about the worst codebase they’ve ever seen.

Btw, there are some duplicate paragraphs in the article that are probably worth trimming out. Search for “Contract arrives, I sit down with COO and CFO and explain that we have been duped.“


mh sorry, that may have been my mistake… I edited it on my phone


Since, you can sign in with GitHub, it would be cool if it could sync/backup posts to a repo. Since in the end, the posts are mostly markdown, each post could be a .md file in the repo, with the title, subtitles, img header, and tags, in either <> or a code block. Or as plain text and a horizonal divider (*).


That’s an awesome idea! Would need to request write permissions though and most users are wary of this. Thoughts?


Can you have different permissions from different users? If so it could be a setting to "backup to github", and then request that permission then.

Is there a place I can put suggestions/requests? Because I have some for the editor.


The very best alternative to Medium is self-hosted Ghost.

https://github.com/TryGhost/Ghost

And if a person can't figure self-hosting out then the paid version of Ghost is the best option.

https://ghost.org/

Ghost is an amazing platform and it's the only blogging solution that I know of that gets a perfect Google lighthouse https://developers.google.com/web/tools/lighthouse/ score right out of the box.

If Ghost made switching from WordPress easy they would totally take over the blogging space.

I don't know what's up at their HQ but if I were them I'd be making a "switching from WordPress" tool my #1 priority.


Although this seems great, use Ghost. The editing interface is unreal and the SEO/RSS/integrations are plentiful. You can customize it however you like, but there's some nice templates they have for free as well. I use it on Docker and port it around servers all the time (had some server problems here and there and it's super easy to port it using docker to different servers).

The best part is you don't have to worry if Able.bio goes away one day. Self-host will only go away on your account.

Actually running https://sdan.xyz/blog on it. (I personally love how the design and fonts come together... I created this design and it's available on Github)


Is it me, or have there been an uptick in new writing platforms? Two that I can think of are substack and reading.supply.

It'd be interesting to see an open source competitor to Medium; developments in and usage of markdown editors is an added bonus!


Great work - there needs to be a good place to write for free without the site then trying to sell the writing on. I've signed up to your newsletter but it took me a little scrabbling about to figure out how.


We'll charge businesses to advertise their vacancies, so we don't have to get in the way of developers/users.

It should ask you what notifications you'd like to receive during the onboarding process and you can just check the 'Digest' box. Did that not show up for you?


It didn't, but I ended up finding it in the settings. Cheers!


Providing one point of data for you.

I am bookmarking your site because I will be using the jobs board.

As far as the blogging part is concerned, I would rather use Medium because it has a bigger network and, more importantly, I do not trust your platform.

I don't think "we don't take VC money" and "no ads" will help you build trust. It's good that you don't do those things, but that's just avoiding bad stuff. As far as building trust goes, I think you have to actively do good stuff too. In my eyes the jobs board helps with that.

Just my 2¢. Best of luck.


100 on Lighthouse is something to be very proud of. I love this service.


Did you get 100 on lighthouse? For some reason I'm getting 59 on performance on this post itself and 93 on the post he indicated (although everything is around 100 as well).

Regardless, it's a great feat.


I decided to roll my own blog [0] instead of using medium. Moreover, I wrote the static blog generator myself (2 versions, a Python and a Perl version [1]). I have been blogging daily for over 190 days now, and it feels good.

[0] http://plurrrr.com/

[1] https://github.com/john-bokma/tumblelog


This is awesome! Especially for data science, Medium has a stranglehold on reliable articles. Excited to see an alternative, and one that actually seems to work better.


Yes, and in five years they'll start showing blocking modals too, after realising this isn't monetizable.

And the never ending circle continues... Just self-host.


I think folks might be more comfortable switching to this if they understood the business model (or philanthropic finding source). This platform will only have value if it scales (and therefore has substantial costs). How will those costs be covered? What about paying you for your time you spend building and maintaining it?

Looking forward to learning more about your plans, and having an alternative to the existing ecosystem.


Here's the link you're looking for: https://able.bio/about#business-model


Hey there, all that info is here in our manifesto: https://able.bio/about

Hope that helps.


three things:

1. its hard to search for you guys. your name is hard to SEO on. for example "medium kafka" gets you relevant search results. "able blog" doesnt even feature you in the first page. Could you consider changing it ?

2. your tld is nice for branding, but im not sure if you know that these kind of tld have resolution issues in Asia. it would be nice if you were on a .com (even ablebio.com). https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=15663988 and https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=20981212

3. the .bio domain is dangerous. https://icannwiki.org/.bio >Thus, to respect the European Union's standards for 'bio' /organic food, this open TLD will have regulations in place for registrants intending to use it as a space for organic food products. The rest of the non-organic related TLD will not be regulated. The French warning notes the wide range of international standards on agricultural products and organic food, and consequently believes that the TLD can not be implemented unless it is not at all used to denote material related to organic agriculture. It warns of consumer harm or confusion if the TLD were to be implemented.

Since this is a blog service, you would have to strongly regulate this - otherwise other blogs would go down if the EU screws you because of some agricultural/organic food blog someone writes.

in fact you can read lots of similar posts here - https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=20981212 , https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=15663988


Thanks for the feedback, we're still quite a small site so our authority still needs to grow. Google has said that TLD's shouldn't affect ranking.

I didn't know there about the issues in Asia, thanks for mentioning this.

We've looked into the use of bio and there was a case where they considered it to be appriopriate for biographical purposes.

Ultimately though, we do want to get a better tld. I just can't afford it on my current salary :) - suggestions are welcome.


If your TLD will be used for email addresses, I'd recommend sticking to .com, .org, or .net.

A lot of spammers are sending a lot of spam using addresses in the newer TLDs. There is so little legitimate mail from them compared to the spam that it can make sense to treat the whole TLD as a spam source and whitelist any legitimate correspondents you have there.

As far as I know, the new TLDs are fine for websites. Maybe do something like able.bio for your site, but also get something like able-bio.com [1], and use that for mail from the site.

[1] I am just assuming that able.{com,net,org} are already taken.


its not about tld affecting ranking - its about brand keyword search matching. your brand keyword is a bit too generic to match if i search "able blog something"

you should generate names - https://deepnamer.com (nice... it just gave me writeradar.com and codeberch.com ) or https://www.punchlinedesign.net/pun_generator/code+write


The main reason I don't use Medium is due to its restrictiveness on layout. I often include JavaScript snippets that are connected throughout the webpage to showcase concepts, or like to include table of contents for navigation, which you just can't do on Medium.


I like it, it's clean, simple and puts content first.


I love the cause. Is there a way to donate?


Thank you! There isn't, but if you just use the site and spread the word about what we're trying to do that is more than enough :)


Any plans to support custom domains?


Yes.


How about math formula support?


This is a big one for me. I've been looking for a minimalistic blogging tool that has good math support for a while now and have yet to find anything. If able has good latex support in the future I'd definitely start using it.


Yes, we want to support this too and will be looking into it.


Maybe blocks that can render LaTeX?


+1 I would recommend using KaTeX for this. Another thing would be to embed CodeMirror within ProseMirror (https://prosemirror.net/examples/codemirror/) instead of just using monospace font. The additional benefit of that is free syntax-highlighting.

I've played with ProseMirror and math support before, so this is what it about looks like. [1] https://imgur.com/a/rV2AATD


Great. When medium started throwing up paywalls we stopped using it.

Anyone want to guess when these guys put up their first paywall? I'll go with January 2021.


We're self-funded, so we don't need or want to push for a billion dollar exit. We just want to be a sustainable business and resource for developers online. You can read more about our intentions and business model here: https://able.bio/about


It's becoming impossible to "pardon the interruption" with Medium when it happens multiple times a day. For me it's a reflexive response at this point, I don't even remember what they're asking for, my hand just moves to close the thing.


> For me it's a reflexive response at this point [...]

Q: Why would one not install NoScript and get rid of these "interruptions" forever?


Because images on Medium wouldn’t load without JS.


I've just loaded a random Medium link in FF with NoScript enabled and the inline images look just fine.

Q: Am I missing something?


I don't trust browser extensions and don't use any.


The editor looks awesome! Great work :) ..any chanse on open sourcing the editor?


Check out ProseMirror.


Two small suggestions, there's a "placeholder" text for the new post title, but not the content. You also can't hit the enter key to start writing, so at first I couldn't figure out how to write.

The other one is to make the inside is your favicon white instead of transparent. It looks good on light themes, but the A is almost invisible on my dark theme.


Congrats for shipping! :) How's this different from Dev.to ?


Why this feels Medium just all over again?


It’s not. We don’t have to grow at all costs for investors. You can read our manifesto here: https://able.bio/about


To me it seems that they are well aware of why meduim went from cool to suck. Chanses are therefor good they wont do the same


Is there an RSS feed or am I just blind?


Just for individual users at the moment. You can find them on user profiles or at the bottom of articles.

When we launch support for publications you'll be able to follow the publication feed too.

Would you want a feed for all articles?


Yes, that would be good.




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