Hello, world!

I’m Tyler, and I am a software and hardware hobbyist in the greater St. Louis area. I have decided to keep a blog as a notebook for my personal projects.

Some time in December 2019, I decided that I wanted to start jotting stuff down when I’m doing something like wrangling with a tech problem or when tearing down a device or when writing a fun little app or even when soldering a tiny thing to a circuit board. These notes would be little more than something upon which I could look back from time to time, and I planned to start jotting immediately. That did not happen.

Fast-forward to March 2020, and I’ve refreshed all of my prior experience with web development (not much) trying to plan and build my ideal website. Initially, I dove head-first into the frontend realm with React, and, after three months, I can say that I’ve learned way more about SPAs, virtual DOMs, static site generation, and the Jamstack than I even knew existed. I’ve deployed to both Netlify and ZEIT Now, and I’ve followed guides for GatsbyJS and Next.js (both React frameworks) as well as for Sapper, which is a Svelte framework. This space is mind-bogglingly huge, and I’ve only scratched the surface. I come from the systems programming realm where the most exciting thing is complaining about the new bloat features added to C++ every few years. (I kid of course!)

I realized pretty early on that I wanted something custom. I’ve made physical caveman drawings of how I want the site to look since I’m too stubborn to accept any of the prior art I’ve seen for themes. Crucially, however, I realized that I want to jot stuff down about the designing and building processes, as the website will probably never be finished per se (what is, really?). So, in a refreshing bout of getting things done, I used what I knew and set up a LAMP stack on an Amazon virtual machine (t2.micro free tier 😎). I also got an auto-renewing TLS certificate from Let’s Encrypt with the EFF’s certbot tool, and then I just set up WordPress on it. It works for now, and I’ll migrate my content later instead of trying to play both user and developer on a new project.

This blog is, admittedly, selfish to the extent that it’s merely my notebook and not a place for projected advice or in-depth tutorials. However, I am publishing in the hope that someone finds use for something I’ve created like a piece of code that I’ve written or like an Arduino project I’ve wired up or even something like an idea I’ve hinted at that got amplified by the search engines for the one person who needs it.

I don’t know what the future holds. I don’t know what, if anything, on this site will see greater use. But, at least for now, it’s Googlebot and I. And Robert Graham’s masscan.

And that’s okay with me.

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