Second · These are questions for wise men with skinny arms

Second

A Reintroduction

I’m moving my content from tumblr to here. I only used tumblr before because it was resonably public and seperate from other blogging and social networks that I already had established. Now I have a dedicated site serves that same purpose (with a higher cost to me of course). Tumblr had fine formatting tools and tagging, but since I didn’t visit it often or interact with anyone on the site I figured I might as well just make my own island for this stuff. I had a half dozen drafts waiting there at the time of this writing, so maybe this transition will help me get them through the pipeline faster. What I didn’t like about tumblr was its habit of crashing while I was editing a long post. I did get in the habit of putting everything into notepad++ and then dropping it into the web editor at the end for spelling and formatting. It wasn’t really designed for long format posts, so the formatting was always a bit precarious. I was never intrested in the social aspect or any of the media features that tumblr offered. I just wanted an easy to use text hosting platform.

It’s been more than a year since my first post, and in retrospect I’m really enjoying re-reading my older posts (I’d really forgotten most of them). I now wish that I’d kept a better set of links to my favorite HN posts, since now I remember the general content that I read, but not the exact location. I haven’t written anything too embarrsing yet, and in fact I think this writing habit has made me more conservative and thorough in my thought process. Self-examination is a process for improvement right? So I feel like I’m on the right path. Also I notice I mix up thorough and through quite often :(

Looking forward

I’m not going to stick to a strict schedule, but I might end up writing smaller posts and slowly building them into bigger ones. I often have eureka moments where I think “Oh I should totally write about this!", then I mull over the details and arguments in my head for a few days before starting a new post, so mostly disappears before I can get it down. I will try to link out to other blogs I see more often, which is something I avoided doing when on tumblr. Now that I’m officially Yet Another Programming Blogger (YAPB), I figure I should join in the fun!

Getting here

So I’m getting this domain for $2/year for 10 years on GoDaddy, the content is on S3 for free, and the DNS routing through CloudFlare is also free, so with the level of traffic I expect (0 pageviews), it should cost me $2/year.

I orginally started trying to do this in jekyll with a set of scripts I found that would automatically push a site to S3. This ended up costing me half a day as I fought with getting a vagrant image on my windows laptop with Ruby 2. My first mistake was trying to start with the testing image used for the Travis tests from the aforementioned repo. I didn’t notice that it was a x64 image and my 32bit Windows won’t run that in VirtualBox without VT-x (which my C2D doesn’t have). The default vagrant image on the site is now too old even for 1.9.3, so I sunk a ton of time into trying to make that work (rvm didn’t help) before I pulled down a default 14.04 image. Then I tried getting 14.04 with Ruby 2 and jekyll before looking for a vagrant image with jekyll already installed and configured, only to find that the one I pulled down had default network settings such that I couldn’t SSH to it. So after 4 failed attempts I ended up just uploading a random HTML template I found to S3 manually and then spent the next afternoon fiddling with the DNS settings.

I remember running across hugo much earlier when the Go community was much smaller and not understanding the need for a better static site generator. Now I understand, not the speed part, but the I downloaded a single binary on Windows and everything works in 2 minutes part.

And now it’s here.