Steve October 7, 2020

The new Gemini internet protocol may not have an iOS app, but you can still access its clients from your iPad or iPhone.

Lately, I’ve been checking out pages on the nascent Gemini protocol, a new application-level protocol for hypertext documents. It falls somewhere between the minimalism of Gopher and the complexity and weight of the World Wide Web.

The Gemini protocol requires using a Gemini client, and there are multiple command-line and GUI applications available. I’ve wanted to read Gemini from the comfort and convenience of my iPad, but there isn’t an app for iOS.

I found AV-98, a Python-based command-line client created by Gemini’s originator, Solderpunk. I decided this would work for me, as in a previous article, I demonstrated how to set up and use iSH to run Linux or develop applications on iOS.

Install AV-98 on iOS

AV-98 only requires Python 3 and is a quick, easy install:

git clone https://tildegit.org/solderpunk/AV-98

Running AV-98 is easy enough:

python3 av98.py

I decided to make an alias to make this easy to run anytime, anywhere. I’m using fish shell. So I made a function:

function av98

Then entered:

python3 ~/AV-98/av98.py

And saved it permanently:

funcsave av98

Now I can run it anywhere by just typing av98.

AV-98 basics

  • List commands: help
  • Go somewhere directly: go gemini.circumlunar.space
  • Follow a link: Type its number (e.g., 3) and hit Enter
  • If a page is too long to read: less.
  • Exit a page by pressing q on your keyboard
  • Go back one page: b (or back)

  • Exit: q (or exit)

I recommend making gemini://gemini.circumlunar.space/capcom, an aggregator for Atom feeds containing Gemini content, your homepage. It’s an easy and convenient way to discover great new Gemini activity.

Discover new corners of a quieter and simpler internet with the Gemini Protocol.

The Linux command line on iOS? Yes, you can.

Open source means I can find Linux familiarity on any terminal.

About the author

Lee TusmanLee Tusman is a new media artist, programmer and educator interested in the application of the radical ethos of collectives and DIY culture to the creation of, aesthetics, and open-source distribution methods of digital culture. His artistic output includes interactive media, video art, net art, experimental videogames, sound art, websites, twitter bots and micro-power radio stations.

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