on the smol web

rediscovering www

this is an expansion of a recent minilog post which I'll repeat here:

Trying to geminize (geminify?) my web browsing experience on android.

I couldn't force Firefox into defaulting to reader mode. I settled on the via browser which is small, minimalist and highly customizable. You can add scripts, so to implement a kind of reader mode I've changed the background colour to white and text to black. There's a setting to change the text size and you can block images easily.

I've changed the default search to wiby.me which searches the 'classic web' and I've got a tab open for search.marginalia.nu which prioritizes older websites

this is probably an ongoing project so I'm making a page rather than a gemlog.

What i like about ariane is it's beautifully designed and minimalistic. it's a joy to read text on.

it occurred to me that i could make my web browsing more like this.

i was sending articles to my kindle but that takes too long.

i tested a number of browsers (nightly, chrome, duckduckgo, puffin) before settling on the via browser

which is available here

The app is only a few meg but it's packed with features. it's the closest in design to ariane.

i don't like dark mode, and light mode doesn't seem to exist: ie. forced white background and black text.* to implement this i added some scripts

function changeBackground(color) { document.body.style.background = color; } window.addEventListener("load",function() { changeBackground('white') });


var all = document.getElementsByTagName("*"); for (var i=0, max=all.length; i < max; i++) { all[i].style.color = "black"; }

these generally work, not so well on complicated websites like scp-wiki.wikidot.com or theguardian.com, but I'm avoiding bloated websites. trying to. maybe I'll look further into that.

Also, if there are a number of layers of backgrounds the colour isn't changed to white.

*I did find a Firefox add-on called dark reader (which is available on mobile too) and that can force a light mode but it does slow down loading times.

i would like to find a script that automatically rejects all cookies too.

I'm not particularly techy, well ok i am, but I'm terrible at coding; i don't have the patience (and I've tried: basic, java, whatever language spectrums were, even poplog). Gemini appeals to me because it's peaceful, environmentally friendly, accessible, the people are contemplative, intelligent and interesting. often people post websites that fit with the (nebulous) gemini philosophy, and its good to remember that my opinion "the web is broken" is an oversimplification.

I've been using Via Browser for a couple of weeks now. I changed my default search back to ecosia because I tend to search for information not for something to read.

It's pretty much become my default browser, the only thing I miss is the pull-down gesture to refresh the screen. I haven't found a gestures app that has this functionality.

Another android browser I just discovered is

EinkBro ("lightweight... designed for Eink devices")

You can quickly switch to reader mode, and save pages to epub/pdf. I'll use it when I want to send articles to kindle but not as a main browser (it's not as well designed as via)

this is a list of smol websites that i like

branch magazine

long form articles on a sustainable internet

wiby search

focused on simpler, personal websites, "searching the classic web"

marginalia search

available on gemini too, privileges older websites

search my site

similar to wiby: lots of user submitted sites, open source

tilde news

linuxy news with reddit like commenting. command line style (not for me though with my light mode scripts!)

write this

minimalist blogging that reminds me of flounder. I haven't found much writing that appeals to me on there though.


a reddit sub. synonym of smolnet.

also on lemmy

1MB club

websites under a meg

1024b club

websites under a kilobyte!

radio anima amoris

Electronic radio stations with the current track all in one page


Multiplayer games, reminiscent of Yahoo games back in the 90s

if anyone knows of a search engine where you can sort by website size, or filter out bloated sites, please let me know