‘Installing’ The Session

‘Installing’ The Session

I see I’m invited to ‘… add The Session to [my] home screen’ . I may be an old duffer but I don’t know what this means. I have a shortcut link to the site on my desktop so can go to it easily (as I do fairly often). Can someone explain what ‘installing The Session’ would involve and why it would be different / better / a nice thing to do?

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Re: ‘Installing’ The Session

"I see I’m invited to ‘… add The Session to [my] home screen’…"

This behavior is related to your web browser, not to the "TheSession.org" itself. Your browser may be noticing that you frequently visit the website, and it is offering to add a link on your browser’s "home screen," which you may or may not actually ever see, depending on how you set your browser preferences.

TheSession is not a device-based app.

Re: ‘Installing’ The Session

Thanks, Barry Morse, for taking the trouble to respond to my plea for enlightenment, but I regret to say that I reman benighted. I’m reminded of Chomsky’s sentence ‘Colorless green ideas sleep furiously’ which, though syntactically correct, conveys no discernible meaning. I realise that my incomprehension is down to my own ignorance, but there you go. Am I to gather that (a) the ‘Install The Session’ invitation doesn’t come from Jeremy but is generated by some algorithm independently of any sentient being, and that (b) it will make no sodding difference to what I’m already doing?

My apologies if this is an inadmissible thread about the metastructure of the website. All I can say is that, although I posted the first item here, I didn’t start it. It was kicked off by the unexpected appearance of the panel with the "Would you like to add The Session to your home screen?" question.

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Re: ‘Installing’ The Session

I disagree with Chomsky. I think there is plenty of meaning in his famous example. If not, this relegates all of poetry to the rubbish bin.

OK. What browser are you using? The Session is not an app, it’s a website. Your browser is offering to make your life easier by putting a ‘shortcut’ to this site that you frequently visit on you home page, so you just click to come here. But you may not have the page of links set to your opening page.

IT technical queries go better if you mention the software, the version, and your platform - else how can people know how to help?

Re: ‘Installing’ The Session

Your internet browser is trying to make Thesession.org your homepage. If you were to open your browser, it would automatically open to thesession.org. (or at least have an easily accessible icon directing you here).

If you are satisfied with your shortcut, and don’t want to rock the boat, just decline it and keep doing business as normal.

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Re: ‘Installing’ The Session

If I’m not mistaken, it was actually William Carlos Williams who first wrote:

"Would you like
To add
A shortcut
To "TheSession.org" to
Your home screen?"

Re: ‘Installing’ The Session

The short answer is to ignore the queries. You have your shortcut and don’t need anything else. Close the query and expect it will come back from time to time. The reason it comes up is not important. It won’t go away.

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Re: ‘Installing’ The Session

This sounds a bit like the iOS (iPhone, iPad) version of Safari, which allows you to create a bookmark that looks like an app on your home screen… But I don’t think the website has the ability to trigger the action to add it to your home screen. (The best they might do is detect that you’re using a mobile browser, and give you a message suggesting you do it…) But it sounds like this is a Desktop issue. So I agree that it’s probably your browser just asking if you want to give thesession.org a permanent icon in your home screen (like Firefox’s "Top Sites" section of your home screen)… So I don’t think there’s any real advantage if you’ve already got a bookmark for it, but there wouldn’t be any harm in it either…

Re: ‘Installing’ The Session

I’m not sure I’m wiser in the ways of installations and home screens, but I’d like to thank all who have taken the trouble to offer information and advice. And what a community! From as far away as Colorado, Vancouver, Melbourne, Ohio, and New Jersey, people who don’t know me have tried to help me out of my ignorance. I’m particularly indebted to Ailin for suggesting that ‘The short answer is to ignore the queries’ - an admonition I shall take to heart. And of course to Barry Morse: clearly much to be gained by looking further into the works of William Carlos Williams.

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Re: ‘Installing’ The Session

Okay, here’s what’s happening…

The Session is what’s known as a progressive web app. That’s a fancy marketing term for a website that behaves much like a native app (including working offline).

If you use an Android phone, you might have seen a prompt to add The Session to your home screen. This is something that only progressive web apps like that The Session can request.

It’s still your decision though, so if you don’t want to add The Session to your home screen, you can dismiss the prompt and then you won’t ever see it again.

This prompt is also showing up on desktop browsers, where it seems to make less sense. But actually you can "install" websites like The Session (progressive web apps) even on your desktop computer. In practical terms, this means you’ll see an icon for The Session, just like you’d see an icon for Word, or your email app. Double-clicking the icon opens The Session as if it were an app (it appears "standalone" without any of the browser interface around it).

But I agree it’s kind of confusing on desktop. It definitely makes more sense on mobile. We’re just not used to the idea of installing websites on our desktop computers.

So feel free to dismiss that notification. Ailin wrote "Close the query and expect it will come back from time to time." Actually, if you close the query, a cookie will be set so you’re not bothered by the prompt ever again …well, technically until 2038 🙂

On mobile though, I *strongly* suggest adding The Session to your home screen!

Reverend said "I don’t think the website has the ability to trigger the action to add it to your home screen."

That’s true on iOS, which is a bit of shame. You have to add it manually, which is a pain. You need to click that "share" icon in Safari (the rectangle with the arrow coming out the top) and then hunt around for the "Add to Home Screen" option …Apple don’t make it easy for you!

*But* once you’ve done that, then you’ll effectively have an app of The Session on your iPhone/iPad: when you tap the icon, it will open just like a native app (fullscreen, without any of the browser interface).

I should probably make a video to demonstrate how it’s done.

Re: ‘Installing’ The Session

Hi, Jeremy. I said what I said because, although I have a The Session icon on my Android home screen, I get the same message the op gets periodically, not just once. There appears to be no rhyme nor reason as to when or how often. It just shows up now and then. The phenomenon is recent even though I’ve had the phone and the icon for years.

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Re: ‘Installing’ The Session

"But I agree it’s kind of confusing on desktop. It definitely makes more sense on mobile."

I feel it’s the opposite. Android mobile phones don’t have "a" home screen, they have multiple screens. I don’t know what iPhones have. My "first" screen has room for 20 quick-launch icons plus my weather widget (former weather guy, here…). I have three additional screens. I only use the first and the last screen: the first I can always get to by pressing the little circle icon once or twice (it depends). The last always has room to add icons; the others are pretty static: I don’t use them often but they are apps that I need.

So the Android idea of a "home" screen is like the Ford Model T idea of a car: It might eventually get you there, but that’s about it. I consider it a failure.

My Ecosia browser, like most or all browsers, has it’s own home page. That’s where Google borrowed the mobile phone home screen idea from and promptly mangled it.

TheSession.org is on my browser’s home page, which I can always reach by pressing the little house icon near the address bar.

But, to be honest, nowadays I primarily use a news reader that periodically pulls down new comments.

(My apologies for going meta.)