Website redesign (3.0)

From uCtrl
This is outdated now — as I have now migrated to MediaWiki

It’s not long ago that I redesigned this website, and now — two months later I am doing it again… So why?

My goal with the previous redesign was to “peel away everything that didn’t emphasize the content and reading experience. I wanted a clean, minimalistic design, where the content was in focus.”

This time I am doing it to make things easier for myself.

Both my previous website designs had a lot of theme modifications. That did give me a more personalized look and some custom features — but it also took time away from writing and other projects. I had a worklist with lots of website tweaks and was spending most my time on those — not writing, and not building things to write about.

A modified theme also makes it harder to keep it up to date.

This time I’ve gone all out simple;

  • I have not changed or overridden anything on the Hello Friend theme I am using.
  • I no longer have an asset pipeline.
  • I’m no longer building the site with GitLab CI. Instead, I am using ZEIT Now both for building and hosting.
  • My worklist is moved off GitLab issues, and into my Notion workspace.
  • Images are hosted, optimized and resized separately — by BunnyCDN.
  • The content is written in pure markdown, with very few Hugo shortcodes. That makes it easy to use any markdown editor and to migrate to another platform later on, should I want to.
  • Project parts lists are no longer fetched through my own logistics API but statically inserted into the markdown files.
  • I have removed lazy loading, Photoswipe and srcset for images.
  • I have also removed analytics and comments.

With these changes; I now have a website platform that I don’t have to maintain. I can focus on building things and writing about them.

I’m a sucker for getting hung up on details and spending way too much time tinkering with them.

I decided that having a basic website — with frequent content is much better than having a polished and feature-rich website with little content. So for me, it was either this or to give up on the website altogether. Let’s see how it goes :smile: