Does anyone talk about WordPress Trackbacks anymore? They were the glue of blogging in the day. If I wrote a blog post with a link to something on your WordPress blog, you would get a notification and a link on the post that went back to mine.

Maybe as close as we got to two way hyperlinks.

I see them come in to my comments now and then. If I do not know the blog, I might check it out to see who is writing about me. Many times it is just a link farm. But many times not.

This one came in via email, not for this blog, but for a 2013 project that is hosted on


For The Remix! was a project initiated by Jonathan Worth. He arranged with author Cory Doctorow to provide a collection of hi resolution photos Jonathan took of Doctorow, and made them available for anyone to create remixes.


I had all my UMW ds106 students at the time do it as a ds106 assignment. Jonathan had his phonar students then at Coventry University also make remixes.

All of the submissions are available in one giant gallery.

Back to the trackback – it goes to a collection of fascinating Pixel Sorted Cory Doctorow GIFs made by Joseph Kesisoglou, who was one of Jonathan’s students at the time.


They are described as:

I downloaded cory001.jpg / cory005.jpg film strips, cropped them to individual frames, colour graded using lookup tables, messed up the channels, exported the frames as animated gifs and pass them through Processing, using Kim Asendorf’s ASDF Pixel Sort code, modified for gif file input version from Sam Walker

Now I can see in the dashboard for the site, that these GIFs were added back in 2014. Why is Joseph’s site issuing new trackbacks? Why does anyone care?

Just me. Curious.

Peek at the source code…


Joseph published this post in 2014, but he modified it just last week.

And I can see from the hover preview in the WordPress dashboard that he must have modified his theme, and not only that, by digging in more, knowing something about WordPress URLs, that he moved the content originally in a blog post to a portfolio page.

It looks like he added more GIFs that were not in the original post, so I updated the gallery.

The why is not important, it was actually a nice change to revisit the site. I’m thinking of building a remix activity with it for the Creative Commons Certification project. Then there is just the pride of working on a project with an author I respect (fan-boy alert).

And to circle it back, I got to meet Joseph when I attended the Mozilla conference in 2013. How do I know? My flickr memory clicks in:

Oh Trackback. Remember when we were young? People like Scott Leslie even wrote a poem about ya!

One of Joseph Kesisoglou’s Pixel Sorted Cory Doctorow images. It weighed in at 2.5 Mb so I dropped every other frame, made it a tad smaller, and saved with a higher than usual lossy setting, got it down to about 1.1 Mb. The GIFs are licensed under CC BY 3.0.

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An early 90s builder of web stuff and blogging Alan Levine barks at on web storytelling (#ds106 #4life), photography, bending WordPress, and serendipity in the infinite internet river. He thinks it's weird to write about himself in the third person. And he is 100% into the Fediverse (or tells himself so) Tooting as

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