Return to Buy Me a Coffee, starting with, and site updates

This is the last minor update to TIL before major changes are made, and soon the return of regular publishing. I’ll cover the changes for now and a little about the future.

Let’s start with the changes…

Buy Me a Coffee

The donations page is back. Having previously switched to Memberful, I have since realised that creating a membership program doesn’t make any sense whilst BMC was in fact a good fit. It can be as simple as needed and has capacity to offer more options for supporting TIL should that ever be needed.

The bio is now clearer; much more relevant with cleaner language and relevant links. I’ll likely update this again in the future but I think it does a good job of introducing TIL.

I’ve also published an announcement for the return of the page, “Open again”, which goes into greater detail. Other posts have been made available only to supporters, since they are no longer relevant to the current progress of the project.

Lastly, I have added a goal to the page which can be seen underneath the “Buy” widget; the cost of an annual hosted subscription. This is the top-most priority of costs and is similarly first to be listed on the Funding page.

TIL is now on! I’ve had a lot of fun setting up the profile page, which is in an early preview mode, and getting to grips with the platform and how it can work with and alongside A number of folks on already know well the excellent work that has been done by Adam Newbold and the staff over there.

The other public use I have made of is the “Statuslog” feature, with which I am now posting the TIL Status Updates. It is here that I provide the small, continuous updates to TIL, many of which were previously included in the Release Notes category on the site. The feed of Status Updates is included in the TIL timeline as some of you might have already noticed, and is available for anybody to use via RSS.

As a result of the new Status Updates feed the news posts on this site will instead be more like this very post; longer posts for announcements and related ideas, with reduced focus on every little change. Since the focus of posts here are as resources for using, it feels good to minimise the amount of meta subject-centred writing whilst also keeping it public in a separate space for those who are interested. Finally, my personal blog will no longer be used as a source of news at all; although I may still link to the most significant updates.

I look forward to trying out more of the ways in which and can either interoperate or at least work in a complimentary fashion.


I have made several updates to the site itself; this includes and relates to external platforms.

The header and footer have both finally been improved with regard to the layout of the “Following” icons, the addition of a new separator for the end of posts and pages, and overall design when using smaller screens. The central “Join” column of the footer has also been replaced with a “Support” column, in the process of swapping the membership offering for the donations page.

Given the aforementioned change to how updates are published, the post category for announcements regarding changes has been changed from “Release Notes” to “News”. The ICYMI and About pages have been edited to reflect this switch, whilst the latter also now has an Elsewhere section that includes the newly launched and Mastodon extensions of TIL. The support section of the About page has also been updated to switch the previous membership program for Buy Me a Coffee.

The final changes to pages have been for the Funding page, which now includes a much improved list of goals; there is greater detail and the information is up-to-date. I have also expanded the last section of the page, “Making a donation”.

I’ve added a new page: Tweets. This archive is the remaining copy of these posts, since I have deleted this account.

Elsewhere, I have enabled ActivityPub integration so that it is now possible to get a feed of posts from the site via Mastodon; this link has taken the place of the Twitter profile, where relevant, on the site.

It has been both a lot of fun and a relief to work on TIL again. The feeling I get from connecting to more of the open web, at the cost of the closed web, is… comfort, I think?

My previous plans for 2.0 have not worked as I originally had intended, and so my approach has now changed. I have already started writing the next update, covering this exact topic, and so I imagine that will be along much sooner than this post was from the last update. Certainly my path forward is much clearer and it is safe to say that I have found the renewed energy to finally get TIL back on track.

Until the next announcement, I’ll see you all on the timeline.

Thanks for reading.

— Simon

Release: 1.9.9; Preparing for 2.0

This is the last update for the current version of TIL, and includes a decision about the current publishing status of the project.

The Changelog

  • Changed the order of the “Follow” icons in the header and footer.
  • Fixed the link for ICYMI on the About page.
  • The site’s software has been updated to the latest Hugo version possible (0.91).
  • Edited the and Twitter profiles to make the Contact and Support links clearer.
  • Halted all publishing activity until 2.0.

The Details

Though minor, I’m happy to have made these changes within version 1. I didn’t get everything done but I’m glad to have moved the site onto the latest possible version of the hosted software; has supported version 0.91 of Hugo for a while, and it is best for the site to be up-to-date.

Posting on the regular schedule has been difficult this summer, at least to a much larger degree than I had originally planned. As such I am now halting regular posting and will resume full publishing alongside the update to 2.0.

I am looking forward to returning with the update, and hope to even better help as many people as possible become as confident and comfortable as possible with

If you want to know about 2.0 when it is released, you can subscribe to ICYMI. More information can be found on the About page.

Thanks for reading, and see you on the other side.

— Simon

Release: 1.9.8; an apology, tweaks, and fixes

With this set of maintenance updates I’m continuing to focus on the changes and fixes that put TIL into the best position possible for the current version. However, some elements of this release are also laying the groundwork for 2.0.

The Changelog

  • Introducing posts are now on hiatus until further notice.
  • Favorites guide edited with note regarding outdated information.
  • Lookup posts:
    • Return with multiple entries this week.
    • Removed the pronunciation label.
    • Existing posts will be edited.
  • Marked posts are no longer regularly published.
    • Will instead be published live as new features of TIL become publicly available.
  • NEW: Funding, a page to explain the costs for making TIL.
  • About page edited for accurate information.
  • History page archive note edited for clearer information.
  • Fixed archive page failing to load.
  • Site footer:
    • NEW: Archive link.
    • Join column edited for clearer language.
  • ICYMI:
    • A new date format at the top of each issue.
    • Fixed issue number discrepancy.
    • Subscribe page edited for accurate information.
  • Membership:
    • Free registration deactivated since it does not include the expected access to membership posts.
    • Join page edited for accurate information.
    • System emails edited for accurate information.

The Details

The Introducing series of posts highlight different members of the community, including a screenshot of their site and relevant links. When creating and publishing these posts I have never once stopped to ask consent from the people featured therein.

I would like to publicly apologise for this behaviour. It was rude beyond measure; inconsiderate, assuming, and overall reflective of an entitled and reckless mindset. Every person featured in these posts has the opportunity to have their post removed.

To those who I have been unable to contact via email: I am deeply sorry both for having done this and failing to find a way to contact you personally.

I am now correcting this behaviour by including as much as possible the habit of asking consent before taking such actions. I will also do a better job of highlighting the means by which any person referenced and/or linked on the site can have said information removed.

From now on the Introducing post type is no longer a part of the weekly publishing schedule. I hope to still publish it in the future but for now will take the time to work out how best to do so.

The emoji prefixes that were previously part of regular post types (until 1.9.7) are still being gradually removed as I make further progress towards consistent and reliable publishing. The reason I reverted this change (having introduced the emoji in 1.9) is primarily for accessibility; I have discovered that emoji do not work particularly well with website readers and even if they did I realised that this would be a bad experience. The information on this site should be a bridge to making it easier to use and be a part of, and so anything that arbitrarily interferes with the flow of said information will inevitably make it less useful.

As with Introducing, I have learned that I should be much more mindful about such choices and am also working to make sure that the changes for 2.0 are as available as possible to as many people as possible.

Pronunciation details in Lookup posts have been removed as of now, with existing posts to be edited over time. I am not currently able to write phonetic spellings and so should never have included that section of the posts in the first place.

The last version of ICYMI did not have an issue number or any contextual information. I’m sorry for the mistake and am working on getting better at that.

Thanks for reading.

— Simon

Reminder: Feeds

Help for adding, removing, updating, or just checking feeds for your account. These posts also include the different ways in which feeds can be used elsewhere.

See also: Feeds feed

Release: 1.9.7

  • Emoji prefixes for posts deactivated.
    • Previous posts with emoji will be edited.
  • Emoji removed from Featured posts.
  • Post footer:
    • Simplified and accurate on the homepage.
    • Made clearer on category pages.
    • 🆕 Greater time detail on individual post pages.

Hint: If you’re using Quotebacks be aware that they won’t translate successfully into the timeline, specifically within short posts (fewer than 280 characters).

You can instead use the Markdown version of the Quoteback to maintain the integrity of the post in the timeline.

Reminder: Account

A collection of Tips covering the various ways in which you can use your account, whether modifying for the timeline, editing details, or getting help with account-related problems.

See also: Account feed

🔖 Reminder: History

From the early days of Today I Learned up until the 15th of November, 2021, the History page was a timeline of updates made to The page remains in an archived state.

See also: News

💁‍♂️ You can create manual quotes via Markdown.

  • Go to any app ->
  • Select the New Post button ->
  • Type the ">" character followed by a space ->
    • Repeat this on a successive line to create lines within the quote.
  • Enter your quoted content ->
  • When ready, select the Post button.