Since this is a nerdy site, I figured my first post after the hello world should be to discuss how the site is built. I decided to try some new technologies, and so far, I’m loving it!
I’ve been playing around with Go a lot recently. Somehow, I stumbled across this excellent static site generator written in Go, Hugo. It’s open source, on GitHub, and the code that I’ve looked at so far looks very nice. The generated site is nice and clean and fast, and it’s super easy to work with. You write your blog posts in markdown and can quickly preview the pages using their local server. It seems to be just the right amount of simplicity, while still offering a lot of flexibility and customizability. I’ll continue to play with it as I go.
I’ve also been playing around a bit with Amazon AWS, and was hoping to try something new with setting up this site. Being a static site, I figured I should be able to host it very easily on AWS S3. A quick search found this awesome tutorial on not only hosting a Hugo site on S3, but also adding a Lambda to automatically rebuild whenever you change the files. Definitely check out that link for the full details, but the basic setup is an input S3 bucket that contains the Hugo files, and an output bucket that contains the static website files generated by Hugo. When a change is detected in the input bucket, the Lambda function is triggered to run Hugo and re-generate the static website into the output bucket, which is then served up using CloudFront. It’s beautifully simple and elegant.
The directions there are not perfectly up-to-date, but using that and the tutorial from Amazon for hosting a static website with CloudFront, I was able to get everything working.
This is fun. I discovered via ProductHunt sometime last year that you can register emoji domain names. Not all TLDs support it (.com does not), but ‘.ws’ does. I thought this one was cool, so I snagged it and have just been sitting on it until now. If the domain is showing up as xn–s28hk2c.ws for you, then your browser is lame. That is what’s called the Punycode for these emojis, basically a character encoding used for internationalized domain names. It should show up as 😎🤓.ws. There seem to still be many short emoji domains available, so check them out. I bought this one and a few others at http://iwantmyname.com/.
I really like Unsplash for great quality images that can be used for free. They’ve got an amazing community of photographers that share their images. The one on the front page right now is by a photographer named Jesus Kiteque. I’ll probably include at least one image from there on every post.
Featured Photo by Thomas Kvistholt on Unsplash