A common distinction in technology for building websites is a separation between “static” and “dynamic” websites. The idea is that a “static” website always returns the same HTML/CSS/etc, whereas a “dynamic” website changes the content that the server returns depending on the request.

This seems, at first glance, to be a pretty sharp and useful distinction, letting us easily distinguish between static and dynamic. However, I don’t think it holds up to real scrutiny, and I believe that this distinction is holding us back from building better types of software that exist in the blurry space between static and dynamic.

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This picture of Les Horribles Cernettes was the first photographic image of a band published on the World Wide Web in 1992. From left to right: Angela Higney, Michele de Gennaro, Colette Marx-Neilsen, Lynn Veronneau.

Dec 21, 2021

My web development origin story goes back around 25 years. Back then I spent my weeks playing Red Alert, until the weekend when I could book 30 minutes of Internet Access at my local library. I’d ride my bike taking a fistful of floppy disks to download as many web pages and images to take home, study the code, and build web pages offline using Notepad.It was thrilling.25 years later and I’m as excited about creating websites as I was then. Feels like we’re still on the crest of this wave.Even in the last few weeks there’s genuine inflection points in the way I make websites. Some completely new, some reversions back to ways of old.While there’s absolutely a learning curve to getting started, once you’ve got momentum, modern web development feels like having rocket boosters. The distance between idea and execution is as short as it’s ever been.Speaking of learning, that’s number one on my reasons why I’m still excited about making websites…

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2022 needs to be the year when we seriously begin to get rid of bloatware, hype and trends in web development. It needs to be the year when we focus on performance and on utilizing the technology in harmony with the intend behind it. I am not saying that we should do all web development in assembly or C, but we need to stop the JavaScript, Ruby on Rails, Python with Django and PHP framework madness.

Remember: those pushing Web3 and anything else crypto-related are those who stand to profit off of it.

Web3 will only create a further socially and economically stratified society.

We can make a better, free, decentralized internet without it.

What if I told you there was a way to instantly increase your email deliverability, website accessibility, the number of social media posts, and the customer perception of your brand? We just did exactly that by switching our primary domain from spot.xyz to spotvirtual.com.

Initially, the allure of a four-letter domain was strong. The .xyz extension was also fitting–Spot being a 3d virtual workplace in the browser–as it pertains to the multi-dimensional nature of our product. Moreover, surely choosing the same top-level domain as Google’s parent company, Alphabet, has been using for years is a relatively safe choice for our application? Unsurprisingly, this turns out to not be the case.

Not all top-level domains (TLDs) are created equal and some are much worse than others. We suspected as much, but we didn’t know how to quantify the risk when we were making this decision. In this post we lay out the impacts that having a .xyz was having on our business and hope to simplify the decision for other companies in the future.

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Sep 16, 2021

Micro portfolio platform: https://folio.ink I created this using NGINX aws instance with a mongo DB, S3 for storage and gumlet to process the images. Its a ES6 vanilla JS front end with webpack and php for backend.

Aug 13, 2021

Safari is holding back the web. It is the new IE, after all. In contrast, Chrome is pushing the web forward so hard that it’s starting to break. Meanwhile web developers do nothing except moan and complain. The only thing left to do is to pick our poison.

So, you’ve got a website that you want to make use less bandwidth. Maybe you’re paying by the byte for content delivery, maybe you’re worried about the environment, either way, let’s assume you want to make your images as small as possible. The obvious place to start is just shrinking your images…

A constellation of personal thoughts and images

A world of artful frames and colorful edges

A field of stars slowly moving together

A multiverse of expressive web pages

May 29, 2021

Two years ago, Google proposed Manifest v3, a number of foundational changes to the Chrome extension framework. Many of these changes introduce new incompatibilities between Firefox and Chrome. As we previously wrote, we want to maintain a high degree of compatibility to support cross-browser development.  We will introduce Manifest v3 support for Firefox extensions. However, we will diverge from Chrome’s implementation where we think it matters and our values point to a different solution.

For the last few months, we have consulted with extension developers and Firefox’s engineering leadership about our approach to Manifest v3. The following is an overview of our plan to move forward, which is based on those conversations.

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The emerging norm for web development is to build a React single-page application, with server rendering. The two key elements of this architecture are something like:

  • The main UI is built & updated in JavaScript using React or something similar.

  • The backend is an API that that application makes requests against.

This idea has really swept the internet. It started with a few major popular websites and has crept into corners like marketing sites and blogs.

I’m increasingly skeptical of it.

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May 24, 2021

This is the first post in web.dev’s engineering blog. Over the coming months, we hope to share actionable insights from our work—so watch for posts with the Engineering Blog tag! Here we’ll be covering the build process for our static site and the (optional!) JavaScript behind our web components.

web.dev provides content about building modern web experiences and allows you to measure your site’s performance. Savvy users may have realized that our Measure page is just an interface for Lighthouse, which is also available in Chrome’s DevTools. Signing in to web.dev lets you run regular Lighthouse audits on your site so you can see how its score changes over time. I’ll be revisiting the Measure page a bit later, as we think it’s fairly special. 🎊

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Not that long ago some well-meaning-but-dumb laws required that websites ask for permission to set cookies.

Since then we have all grown used to a crappier Internet, where users routinely dismiss popups without reading them. The result has been wasted time, smaller screens, and precisely zero improvements to privacy.

Now the UK body responsible for policing these laws has published new guidelines on how we must comply. In short: we’ve been doing it all wrong.

May 18, 2021

Google is rolling out a significant change as a part of their page experience ranking algorithm in June 2021.

From the release of the Core Web Vitals and the page experience algorithm, there is no longer any preferential treatment for Accelerated Mobile Pages (AMP) in Google’s search results, Top Stories carousel and the Google News. Google will even remove the AMP badge icon from the search results.

You can now safely ignore Google AMP when building a more diverse and more exciting web without any artificial restrictions set by the adtech giant.

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Created on Oct 26, 2020
By @root
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