Is This Thing on?

Blank paper

Photo by Brandi Redd on Unsplash

So, here's a blog post.

I have no idea what I'm doing. You start playing around with new libraries and services and things and you start stringing them all together and before you know it you've wired up a blog and you don't really have any excuse not to use the thing, right?

Am I going to write a lot of stuff? Probably not. Will the things I do write be tutorials? Ramblings? I DON'T KNOW! I don't have all the answers. Most days I don't feel like I have any of them. I'm just along for the ride. I doubt anyone will read this thing to begin with so I can do what I want. I guess even if someone did read this I could still do what I want...

(Somewhat) Technical Things

I have an enormous crush on ZEIT at the moment. I love Next.js. I love Now. So I really wanted to build something with both.

I originally tried out MDX and got it working but I wasn't a fan of how I needed to implement index pages. I tried out Gatsby but my Zeit crush wouldn't let me stray from Next.

When Markdown files fizzled out I thought I'd go the ole MongoDB route. But then I needed to build a whole API to talk to the database and ugh, I just didn't want to deal with it.

Then, I fired up a WordPress droplet over at DigitalOcean and used the WP API as a backend/content editor and fed that data into Next. It was alright, but I didn't really want to maintain a WordPress instance as well as my actual site application. And while DigitalOcean is awesome, I didn't want to split up hosting my apps between multiple services. If I'm maintaining the code for it, I'd rather everything live under the same roof. That way deployments can stay the same and it reduces cognitive load for me.

I really thought I was going to go with Ghost at this point. I still would have to host it on DigitalOcean (or their hosted service) but it was JavaScript. And that goes a long way with me. So I made a quick theme out of my site and went with it.

Almost immediately after finally saying "Screw it. I'm just going to go with Ghost." and getting it up and running and serving my site, I started looking at headless CMSs because I can't leave well enough alone. Prismic won out. It's essentially a content API that I don't have to maintain so I can keep my code in one place. They have JavaScript and React libraries to interact with it. It's been a bit of a learning curve but I've been happy with it. I'm also kinda happy that the stuff it doesn't provide (like RSS feeds) will be fun and interesting little services I can crank out and stick on Now without much fuss.

ZEIT logo

ZEIT

I'm also in the process of doing the IndieWeb stuff because that movement strikes a chord with me. I want to associate myself with that kind of geek. I have some other little things I want to play around with here as well.

Where We Go From Here

Who knows? Not me...

I've been looking for an outlet lately. I've toyed with the idea of making YouTube videos, podcasting and blogging. Because I was smart, I bought a whole bunch of gear for making audio and video content first (I've actually done this over the years because I like to think of myself as a hobbyist photographer/videographer/muscian but I like to be funny) when I just needed to stick my email address and password into a couple services and spend a couple hours coding. If I don't like this, maybe I'll do videos. If that doesn't work out, maybe a podcast. Maybe I'll just be like chantastic and do it all.

I'm just figuring it out as I go. You can come along if you like.