A New Site and an Experiment with Studying in Public
My goals for the site were:
- Easy authoring
- Easy publishing
- A sophisticated visual style that uses typography to good effect
- To make it easier to study in public - More on that later.
For authoring, I chose Eleventy. I had heard good things about how it was easy to use and also easy to customize. I found these to be mostly true. The one thing that tripped me up was figuring out which templating language to use. Because Eleventy supports several templating languages out of the box, it took me some time to settle on one which I found intuitive (Nunjucks).
Once I was past that, the docs and the occasional Google search were more than sufficient for me to work through everything else quickly. Caveat: Someone new to front-end development could easily get lost in all the options.
For publishing, I went with Netlify. Their reputation for ease of use was great. And it wasn't an exaggeration. After creating an account and connecting it with my domain name and GitHub repository, Netlify automatically detected that I was using Eleventy and suggest default publishing options, which I accepted. About one minute later, the first version of the site was live. ffffadflajadflkajf
I used Tufte CSS as the basis for the visual design, but customized it pretty extensively.
The most obvious customization is in the typography. The font size is substantially smaller to provide better information density. And rather than using Tufte CSS's very traditional serif fonts, I opted to use Mozilla's Open Source Fira Sans, augmented by Fira Code.
The result, I hope, is a design that balances appearing both very traditonal and very modern.
Beauty of style and harmony and grace and good rhythm depend on simplicity
Studying in Public
My final goal was to make it easier for me to share the results of my studies. I'm constantly reading and studying, but haven't done much sharing in a while.
So instead, I'm doing something new. I'm taking the things I'm learning and writing them down in a Foam notebook. My notes are rough, unfinished, and probably wrong occasionally. But I can publish them without thinking too hard. And I suspect that's the most important thing.
I hope that others find it helpful, but I also know that I'm going to enjoy having an easy place to find my notes on the go.
Here's to a new site and to trying new things!