January 28, 2018

It's Okay to Be Boring

I’ve been wanting to have a programming blog for a while. I’ve had fits and starts, but I always get bogged down in starting to write my own site engine. In my mind, it’s not enough to just throw something up on Blogspot; I’ve got to code it myself. I’m a developer, right? Developing is what I do!

However, writing a blogging engine is Hard. I mean, I can mix a markdown parser and some JS and stick it all on Github, but it eventually penetrated my brain that someone already solved this problem. Okay, so, if I don’t want to write everything from scratch, let’s throw a static site generator at the problem! All I need to do now is create my own, awesome, completely custom theme using all of the latest CSS tricks I’ve discovered. Oooh, I’ve got a really good idea for a site that looks and feels like an IDE. That’d be super cool!

But making things look good is Hard, as I’ve learned by sitting through endless design meetings debating the finer points of which font and color combinations are most universally unoffensive (since, it seems, Newton’s Third Law applies as much to design opinions as it does to physical forces).

I’ve been trying lately to work in a more minimalistic way, repeating to myself that You Ain’t Gonna Need It. I’ve been trying to separate what’s important from what’s just something that needs to be done, and while things in the second category still need to get done, they might not warrant as much time as things in the other group. So what’s important about a blog? Is it the look, or the underlying code? No, it’s the content. So, here I am, using Somebody Else’s Code to generate a site that uses Somebody Else’s Theme and is served from Somebody Else’s Servers. Sure, I’ll probably get around to customizing the styling at some point, and perhaps even tinker with the underlying generator, but, for now, I can live with it all being Somebody Else’s Problem.

It’s okay to be boring, because at least I’m getting stuff done. And by getting stuff done, I mean, of course, rambling about boring things and proffering unsolicited opinions, since that’s what I really want to do anyway.

© Joseph Moore 2018

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