It’s high time to update this here sleepy site, is it not? I decided to wipe out my lovingly hand-crafted photo blog when I realized keeping things manually updated was not something I enjoyed. The plan was to switch to a long-supported static site builder and well… I just never got around to it. I’m not sure what’s prompted me to suddenly try it again now but here we are.

This page circa 2005

This was originally a “photo blog” where I posted pictures almost daily. Courtesy of the Internet Archive here’s what it (roughly) looked like: v1

The underlying system was based on Wordpress with some custom gallery stuff. It eventually led me to being featured in a Canon commercial, so that was nice. I got increasingly frustrated with wanting to make changes in the PHP-based source so I eventually switched to a custom Rails blog in the (ultimately vain) hope I’d get good at Ruby.

The 2010 redesign v2

I’m still pretty happy with the design here. I scanned an A4 paper, ramped up the contrast and carefully sliced and diced the images and CSS (manually!) so that it would fit as a background without a noticeable overlap. The image galleries also looked great - the only downside being that I had to manually crop the previews so that they’d fit together nicely in a block with different-sized thumbnails.

There were some other problems that led to a plan for a grand redesign:

  • Custom blog code sounds great, but it turns out you need to keep up to date with Rails development if you want things to keep working
  • It wasn’t a good experience on mobile

It’s the latter that caused my main issue with ever getting an update out: the whole frontend world was changing rapidly and I had no idea what to do with CSS pre-processors and the like. I figured it’d shake out pretty soon so I put up a quick “be back soon” page which then stayed in place for about a decade. Whoops.

“Redesign”, 2021 2023 edition

So, here we are. This is now running on Hugo with an off-the-shelf theme that should allow me to once again focus on getting some content up as opposed to fidgeting with the backend. Let’s see how this one shakes out, eh?