Costs of hosting a small server

I had no idea how much it would cost to host a Mastodon instance. This is for everyone like I was who’s thinking about running their own server but wants to know what to expect.

Free Radical currently has 62 users. The numbers here are what I pay our small little instance and would certainly jump up if we grew by a factor of 100x. Continue reading Costs of hosting a small server

Translating toots with Workflow

If you’re using Mastodon on an iPhone, you’re probably using the excellent Amaroq client. For some very good reasons, it doesn’t have a built-in feature to translate toots into your own language. That’s OK, though. We can implement that ourselves!

This will walk you through the process of installing Workflow on your iPhone, then configuring Amaroq to use it to translate toots from your timeline. There are a lot of steps here, but most of them are for the one-time setup. Don’t worry: you won’t have to do all of these every time you want to read something written in French. Continue reading Translating toots with Workflow

Our first silenced instance

I silenced our first domain this morning (and updated the status page) because a user pointed out questionable content and I agreed with their assessment.

Much has been said about that particular instance and I’m not getting into all that. It did want to comment on the rationale behind the action, though:

Continue reading Our first silenced instance

Why I’ve automated deployments

Free Radical is running on a Digital Ocean VPS. Instead of deploying it manually, I turned the process into a couple of Ansible playbooks1 that do the right things quickly and repeatably.

I describe what it does in the README, but that’s just a feature checklist. So why would I go through the effort? There are several reasons:

Continue reading Why I’ve automated deployments