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standards hot take Show more

@hirojin @garbados
There are test suites, like http://activitypub.rocks
But some essential parts of the protocol have bits open to implementation choices, like authentication and authorization, that can work with OAuth or HTTP Signatures. There are so many options.
Try looking at the specification and searching for MAY (case sensitive) to view some.
https://www.w3.org/TR/activitypub/

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@garbados @tobypinder Sorry, but Mastodon is not the de-facto implementation with Pleroma and Misskey around, and I have no influence over the ActivityPub spec. I did have influence while it was in draft stage, but it is no longer so.

@Gargron @tobypinder i maintain masto is the de facto implementation. the only parts of pleroma's API that have documentation are endpoints not shared by masto. misskey doesn't appear to have API documentation at all. when devs have interop problems, folks conform to masto's expectations over whatever the spec may imply. there are AP implementation which are not masto, but none with its reach or impact.

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@garbados I get your point but the reason libraries are missing is mostly that AP is a rather thin layer and most of the thought goes into internal representation and specific business logic.

@Gargron i feel a standards org, or anyway some kind of meta-steward, could take stances on those things and document best practices (ex: how to map AP objects to an SQL schema) and/or develop tooling (ex: activitypub-server.{rb,js,...}) to support those stances. it's not necessary for the ecosystem to leave users and aspiring modders in the cold because the core spec is thin.

@garbados @Gargron
That sounds like micromanaging implementation details. Standards should not do that - some implementation might not use SQL at all.

But given the standard is so open ended some examples of live wire (json objects and session descriptions) data with explanations.... and examples from all implementations. To help get a feel for how stuff work in practice...

@LaH @Gargron

> micromanaging implementations

i think you misunderstand the role of a steward. the point isn't "YOU MUST USE SQL" but "if you are using SQL to store AP objects, here are patterns that will save you headaches"

@garbados @Gargron
OK... but still don't that depend very much what kind of instance You build, both in kind (blog, discussion forum...) and scale (homeserver with users in the low 10s or a mega server with user in millions)

But most... What part of the AP spec is used for Reply, DM, Boost, Public, follower, unlisted posts... Some of that is hinted in the standard, some not mentioned.

@LaH i worry i'm not communicating effectively. the nature of best practices documentation is to start from certain non-universal assumptions and to share knowledge based in working from those assumptions. all the "what about" situations you mention are valid and could have best practices documentation of their own.

@garbados But are it mature enough (honest question, I don't know)? Pleroma and Mastodon seams to do about the same things but in different ways.

In any way, I find it more fundamental to document what we can expect to get on the wire from different implementations, what they expect will happen when we get it and what we can send on the wire and how different implementations will handle that.

@LaH

> But are it mature enough (honest question, I don't know)?

i'm not sure how to parse this sentence

> I find it more fundamental to document what we can expect to get on the wire from different implementations

i agree, and it upsets me that everything but masto skips that level of documentation. pleroma only documents the API endpoints not shared by masto, but not the ones they share.

@garbados OK, sorry... I mean. Are there yet a reasonable agreed upon best practice, or are all doing there own thing and still much experimenting?

@LaH everyone is pretty much experimenting, which isn't to say some patterns aren't more mature than others. even so, it's important to document what stances you and your software take, and to believe in those stances enough to articulate why you chose them for the software. it's fine to disagree about these things; i'm more bemoaning their total absence. for newcomers without stances, guides can save you weeks or months of pain.

@LaH and by "experimenting" i mean "everyone rolls their own mid-level libraries for abstracting AP into their backend, and makes their own arbitrary choices about storage and interpretation"

@garbados Storage is OK field for experiments, but interpretation can cause problems. That's where I really want more documentation. Things like how do we tell a public post from a follower only, how do reply work in the different cases... etc.

But we also need room to improve.... but without breaking the fedeverse.

That masto documentation You talked about - is it in github or at some other web page?

@garbados That seams to document Mastodons client API. While it give some interesting data to look at it seams far from what's going on in the Server to server API...

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