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Tools 4 Procedural Publishing

03 Templates & Bots

  • pad
  • templates - generating text and visual material from templates
  • twitter bot - create a twitter bot that post regularly


Business, Author: Klint Finley Klint Finley. 2016. “This News-Writing Bot Is Now Free for Everyone.” WIRED. Accessed November 18. https://www.wired.com/2015/10/this-news-writing-bot-is-now-free-for-everyone/.

Goldsmith, Kenneth. 2011. Uncreative Writing: Managing Language in the Digital Age. New York: Columbia University Press. https://monoskop.org/log/?p=10009.

How Technology Disrupted the Truth – Podcast | News | The Guardian. 2016. Accessed November 21. https://www.theguardian.com/news/audio/2016/jul/22/how-technology-disrupted-the-truth-podcast.

Pariser, Eli. 2011. The Filter Bubble: What the Internet Is Hiding From You. London: The Penguin Press.

Pritychenko, Elizaveta. 2014. Twitter Bot Encyclopedia. https://ia800509.us.archive.org/4/items/twitter_bot_encyclopedia_with_cover/twitter_bot_encyclopedia_with_cover.pdf.

Resnick, Gideon. 2016. “How Pro-Trump Twitter Bots Spread Fake News.” November 17. https://flipboard.com/@flipboard/flip.it%2FBnl_hy-how-pro-trump-twitter-bots-spread-fake-/f-bc3044f989%2Fthedailybeast.com.

“UbuWeb Film & Video - Kenneth Goldsmith: Sucking on Words (2007).” 2016. Accessed November 18. http://www.ubu.com/film/goldsmith_sucking.html.

Wong, Julia Carrie, Sam Levin, and Olivia Solon. 2016. “Bursting the Facebook Bubble: We Asked Voters on the Left and Right to Swap Feeds.” The Guardian, November 16, sec. US news. https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2016/nov/16/facebook-bias-bubble-us-election-conservative-liberal-news-feed.

02_UNIX and Scriptable workflows


Recipes in creating PDF from HTML & Markdown files


  • We create a pdf from html
  • We start customising it (style.css ++ making patterns out of characters)
  • convert it with latex
  • changing the characters : command sed
   sed 's/snow-white/sun-black/g' snowwhite.txt
  • write the classes css / style.css:
wget http://anjagroten.com/
mv "index.html" "anja.html"
pandoc anja.html -f html -t markdown -s -o anja.md
sed "s/a/ @ <\/span>/g" anja.md > anjaChanged.md
pandoc anjaChanged.md -f markdown -t html -s -o anjaChanged.html
touch style.css
echo ".a{color-background:red; color: white; font-size:30pt; font-family:Helvetica;}" >> style.css
weasyprint anjaChanged.html -s style.css final.pdf

Margreet & Kimmy - from multiple Markdown files to PDF using Weasyprint

  • step 1: copy all files to shared folderS
scp Path/yourFile.md  user@IP:/home/margreet/

(from the terminal of your own computer, not from the server)

  • step 2: find all .md files and copy it to a folder
find markdown files: find . -type f -name  *.md

full command to find md files and copy to a folder:

find . -type f -name  *.md -exec cp {} ../files/ \;
  • step 3: change filenames to create a particular order of the files so when we make 1 file they have this order
mv "* Scarcity of attention.md" 01_Attention_Franc.md


  • Step 4: Make one long file of seperate Markdown files
cat 0*.md > Issue_One_Scarcity.md
  • Step 5: Check in html
pandoc -f markdown -t html -s -o Issue_One_Scarcity.md
  • Step 6: Create a style CSS

created a CSS locally and moved from the local place to the specific folder we are working in

  • Step 7: Convert to PDF with weasyprint
weasyprint SpecialIssueScarcity.html -s scarcity_style.css Test_01.pdf

OUR CSS: http://pzwart1.wdka.hro.nl/~margreet/weasyprint/files/scarcity_style.css

Result http://pzwart1.wdka.hro.nl/~margreet/weasyprint/files/Test_01.pdf

01_Publishing on the World Wide Web

In this first session we'll focus on how publish on the World Wide Web.

We'll get familiar with simple tools such as HTML and CSS, which constitute the basis of any website.

Jointly we'll investigate how, before the arrival of Web 2.0 social media platforms, publishing on the Web was a DIY activity, which resulted in an explosion of form and content put out in the form of homepages for the world to see.

By 2016 many of these have left the Web, specially after Geocities - probably the largest website hosting service - was acquired by Yahoo and shutdown in October 26, 2009. However, thanks to the efforts of archiving efforts from Archive Team and others, many of the Geocities hosted web pages can still be browsed today.

As a an outcome of this 2-day session I propose the collaborative development of a website charting the history and existence of Geocities, using HTML and CSS. The result can be anything from a time-line, a map, or travel guide through the formers territories of Geocities.