Find it at RoadToSolo.com
Very soon I will be leaving work and becoming a full-time builder.
This is my personal website for the new challenge. I needed somewhere to log my progress and store my projects.
I had three main ideas in place:
- Make it simple & clean - I didn't need too many bells and whistles.
- Add a newsletter to share my progress.
- Add a variety of metrics to give others the feeling of really being along for the journey.
- Blazor Server
- Adobe Illustrator
(In dollars as its more universally understood than the good ol' GBP)
$7 per month - It was free until I realized I couldn't link a custom domain without a subscription so now it's $7 per month.
Me and Adobe had a fall-out a while back, so this is free for the next few months until my subscription runs out.
What went well
I finished it, that's the main thing.
Project fatigue (The feeling that you've been working on a project for so long that you don't feel like its going to end) set in and at points I felt like doing anything but work on this.
I soldiered on however and got there in the end.
I learnt a ton about Blazor and saw a massive improvement in my CSS skills. I actually really like the design choices I have gone with, but what do I know, I'm biased.
What didn't go well
The project fatigue was self-inflicted. My CSS skills are far from amazing, I spent far too much time trying to do fancy animations on the mobile navigation menu. Originally the hamburger menu was an actual burger. The icon looked great and I thought all the developers in the audience would have loved the joke, but the animation to transition from burger to close icon caused too many problems and in the end, I just gave up. I think the more I improve my understanding of CSS and Blazor, this will improve.
I struggled for a while to get my head around how I could achieve this. Then I settled to use the HTML version. Which was horrible. When the form does the post, it navigates away to another page, hosted inside of ConvertKit. I didn't want that. I wanted the artistically talented thumbs up pickle image that is there now. (Check it out when you sign up for the newsletter on the website 😉)
I tried googling the ConvertKit API but for some reason, my Googling skills were lacking that day as I couldn't seem to articulate what on earth I needed. Luckily after speaking to a Twitter friend, he sent me the docs.
I quickly created my own form using HTML, linked up to the ConvertKit API. Easy peasy, problem solved.
Improvements for the next project
- Don't waste too much time on unnecessary details.
- Blazor is overkill for a portfolio site.
- Don't waste too much time on unnecessary details (I said it twice as I need to get this to sink in!)
- Future Improvements
- Use the Hashnode API to pull my blog posts from TechPickle.com
- Create an amazing burger icon animation for the navigation bar
What did you think of the site?
Let me know @TechPickleJoel on Twitter.
You can also sign up for my newsletter. I post about my journey of leaving work and becoming a full-time builder aiming to hit profitability so I can fund my new lifestyle!
It's also the first place to be in the know about any new projects.
Thanks for reading! 💚