This post is something like a release notes for this website; a reminder to my future self to how I kept it up to date.
Removed Google Analytics
This actually happened years ago actually. As a designer, I found Google Analytics useful for the passive user data it provided, mainly:
- Browser market distribution.
- Display resolution.
- User device.
With this, you knew if you needed to target (or not) certain features based on your audience; the classic dilemma on how to implement graceful degradation and/or progressive enhancement.
But I ended up ditching it since the industry has been adopting more common standards:
- Modern browsers go more on par feature wise (see Interop).
- Users expect apps/sites to correctly display regardless of the device.
Swithed from jekyll to 11ty
I have used my personal site as a Learn In Progress. And I have been changing how I built it.
- A "static" PHP site. Where I just used the
include()PHP feature to help me code as DRY as possible.
- A WordPress install (a classic step, mind you). I played around with different skeleton themes to build upon them.
- A middleman site, once I started to feel that WordPress was too much for my needs, since it got richer in features I just didn't need.
- A jekyll site. I took that step because it was more focused on blogging.
- Now: 11ty. The "new" kid on the block (I'm not an early adopter). Even though I got my local Jekyll installation with
rbenv, it somehow still got itself corrupted. Jekyll was slow. My styles compilation (outside of the jekyll pipeline) was wonky. 11ty is blazing fast.
Optimized tooling (reduce almost everything)
I had initially struggled setting up my tooling, mainly npm scripts to automate building and serving the local site. I felt like it
could should be streamlined. The switch to 11ty has helped me with it.
Autoprefixer has been of great help but, like I said before, there's no reason to keep it.
PostCSS is my favorite CSS processor but, again, I didn't need it anyomore due to my CSS best practices principles are aligned towards keeping CSS as readable and understandable for anyone as possible. I probably should write about it.
I think this was actually the only feature that was keeping me from removing PostCSS. I have had a strict "only nest media queries" best practice rule, but I have finally accepted to not nest even these. Another reason to write that CSS best practices post.
I love linting. I love auto-linting even more. It is an enormous help to write cross-team, scalable, easy-to-read code; be it CSS or JS (or whatever). But I removed it because I'm the sole developer of this site and made no practical sense. But I should probably rescue it to have a "code source of truth" exposing my best practices. Yup, I should definetively write that post.
Added dark mode
This is a nod to those people who smartly choose to use a dark mode GUI setting in their devices. It was a fun exercice in the intersection of design and code. The color palette is fully AAA accessibility compliant.
Tidied CSS up
Although the design and code base is as minimalistic as possible, it still needed some tweakings.
- I did a variable (custom properties) cleanup.
- I removed magic numbers in favor of variables (specially for spacing: margin and padding).
- I removed some unused code after the optimizations.
I feel very satisfied overall with this maintenance. Every product, digital ones included, needs one from time to time. I wonder what next steps this one will need.