Micro.blog

donmacdonald
donmacdonald

@kicks I caught your reply to @vega and liked the La France Libre vibe. Headed over to your site to find a late-nineties / early 00s fever dream loosely resembling a blog. Great stuff! Looking forward to what you're cooking up, just wanted to give a shout

kicks
kicks
@donmacdonald Pleasure to meet you! Well done on the hand-drawn borders on your blog. I’m not necessarily nostalgic for the 90s—I just miss handcrafted blogs and I am starting from that aesthetic, we’ll see where it goes. Your sketches are great. I love pencils (as a crossword enthusiast) and I love that your sketches are in pencil.
donmacdonald
donmacdonald

@kicks Thanks for the kind words! I didn't mean to imply your site is retro or a nostalgia thing, just that it reminded me of a kind of site that you’d see in that era, when people were trying out all kinds of crazy stuff with web sites, before there was a set visual vocabulary and design grammar for the web

kicks
kicks
@donmacdonald Ok I like that! ‘Before there was a set visual vocabulary.’ I definitely feel like the web has become extremely rigid. Blogs have coalesced into a common format. And home pages have, too—with ‘hero images’, for instance. I do miss the old styles of the web, but even more, I miss the variety. (I even feel like CSS has played a role in this. With old tables and spacer gifs, one could really concoct strange layouts. To some extent, image maps and Shockwave helped there.) I am feeling a fresh liberation of style after having lived through the recent era of staleness. It’s like something is brewing, about to begin.
vega
vega

@kicks @donmacdonald I've created handmade hobby/artistic websites in the past (some contained dozens of pages and had custom CSS on every page) and still want to make them, but they're very laborious to create and maintain, and there's no separation of site content and site structure. I recently discovered static site generators - exciting stuff, because they segregate structure from content, and allow you to easily build templates for different kinds of content. So that takes a lot of the grunt work out of coding layouts and pages, and makes it much easier to build the kind of arthouse websites that break the conventional visual templates. @kicks, what tools do you use to build your website?

kicks
kicks
@vega I use Jekyll—a ‘staticgen’ like Hugo. I absolutely agree that it gives me flexibility. I don’t think I even realized how much until you mentioned it! I have been kind of hard on it lately, because my customizations are starting to cause me a lot of pain. And it’s just not a good way to do Indieweb things right now. I keep shopping for a new program; I think it’ll just have to do. In a way I feel similarly about CSS—it’s pretty expressive and flexible, but it really strains when I try to do something complex with it. Actually, I just struggle to speak its language. So what you’re saying about handmade sites being ‘laborious’ is dead on. It’s rewarding when it’s done. Oh and I really like Codepen. Here’s a prototype I built before diving in. Thank you for asking—I appreciate that.