Earth Notes: On Website Technicals (2019-10)

Updated 2019-10-19 20:45 GMT.
Tech updates: GSC enhancements, automating data archiving, podcast rash...

2019-10-19: Podcast Rash

There has been a small outbreak of audification podcasts such as How Does PV Grid-tie Generation Sound in Time-lapse?, because I've been having fun.

It seems very hard to tell when anyone is actually listening since at least Apple and Google seem to cache the .mp3 files to play to end users.

At least some of the services polling the RSS feed don't seem to know how to do If-Modified-Since or similar. This may prove to be a nuisance as the file gets bigger. I could also apply compression, possibly statically, to help in some cases. But the bandwidth is trivial for now.

2019-10-05: Automating archiving

I put some extra effort into datasets last month, since GSC (Google Search Console) started reporting on issues with them. GSC wanted encodingFormat and license on everything.

In passing to enable the later, I made everything CC0, ie effectively public domain, per Andrew Katz' advice.

I also converted everything from JSON-LD to HTML5 microdata to make it visible to a reader of the page, and to reduce the chance of getting metadata out of sync from any HTML natural-language description. This also lets me make the microdata part of the same page metadata as everything else, rather than floating unattached.

This flies in the face of Google's preference for JSON-LD. But microdata works better for EOU I think.

So currently I'm trying to save myself some of the monthly chore of making consolidated/compressed/archive batches available by scripting the work, and driving the script from into cron on the first of every month.

2019-10-10: GSC Enhancements

Google is adding more stuff (eg structured-data related) to the "Enhancements" part of the Search Console, the latest being videos. I didn't know that I had so many!

I still don't like the 'Valid' legend, since not all candidates are shown, yet there are no errors reported, so things not 'Valid' are clearly not 'invalid'. They seem to be things that Google is not currently interested in indexing. Also interesting, but not at all the same.