The Spinneret: Issue #8
I had my hands full and didn't write much, but I found a plethora of new articles and tools to help you in your web adventures.
Notable changes in my life, on my website, and in other projects.
Last month I launched Unmute alongside three fellow nerds I know and love, Becky Blank, Brandon Blank, and Ryan Cayabyab.
Unmute is a storytelling platform for underrepresented folx in the tech community. We're not really sure what it's going to end up being, but for now we're planning to host a series of (free) events for the community.
This project is the culmination of two things in my life: 1) My desire to use my privilege to help those less represented in the industry, and 2) A way to get back into storytelling after discontinuing the ridiculous podcast I ran for a few years.
New blog posts and videos I published last month.
As expected, April was a slow month for me. We welcomed our second child early in the month, and I didn't really find a groove to writing again until the month neared its end.
Of the four articles I published, I'm really excited about two:
Articles and news I read last month that I found interesting, with some commentary.
I found so many great articles in April that I started wondering if I should be running a weekly newsletter. There's a lot to get through here, so I tried to bucket them for you.
Here are a few updates from products I've come to love:
- Netlify began talking about Distributed Persistent Rendering as an approach for achieving faster builds without losing the benefits presented by the Jamstack. I love this idea, mostly because it works to better define what is (and what isn't) a Jamstack site (an idea I'm exploring for a post later this month).
- Netlify then released early access for a new feature that implements DPR, On-demand Builders.
- Sanity talked about their Content Lake. I really like reading Sanity's stuff because they think about content management different than most CMS providers. They put the content before the website.
For some reason, I came across a large number of articles in the headless CMS space. There's some overlap here, but all worth a read (or at least a skim to see if it's relevant to you):
Static Site Generators
We can't talk about headless CMS without a little bit of SSG:
SEO & Performance
Odds and ends on the subject:
On the Human Part
Something I don't talk about enough is the process of getting a job (i.e. making money) in the tech space, which is ... a whole thing. Here are a few articles in that vein:
I don't usually like to read case studies. They are often super self-back-patting pieces, when I want to read to learn something. I found these two to be particularly insightful because they teach more than they promote:
New tools that I've recently discovered. They aren't necessarily new.
I also found a lot of new tools this month. These are listed in alphabetical order with a quick snippet about each.
- CodeTour: VS Code extension that allows you to record and play back guided tours of codebases, directly within the editor. Not sure I'd use it, but it's a cool idea.
- Clerk: Simple and beautiful user management. It appears to be an auth solution for front-end projects. I'm definitely interested in looking more at this.
- Explosiv: The most lightweight, yet fully featured static-site generator you'll see.
- FoalTS: Node.JS framework for building web applications. Is it yet another framework? I'm not sure, but I have a project in planning stages and am likely to start evaluating Node.js frameworks soon, so I'll let you know if I learn anything interesting.
- Hyperapp: The tiny framework for building hypertext applications. I've seen some talking about this as a React killer. I'm skeptical, but it is off to a good start.
- Mine: The Future of Data Ownership. Okay, now this one I tried out. And it is equal parts awesome and terrifying. It's also only going to be free for a limited time.
- Nodemailer is a module for Node.js applications to allow easy as cake email sending that pairs nicely with Ethereal, a fake SMTP service. I used these in combination for an upcoming tutorial.
- Porter: A modern app platform in your own cloud. It's basically a way to orchestrate AWS in such a way that it behaves like Heroku. We're using it at Grouparoo. And so far, so good.
- StepZen: A GraphQL API for Any Data Source in Minutes. This seems to follow the approach I took in my Next.js conference talk, Everything is a CMS! I've requested an invitation but haven't played around with it yet.
- Supabase: The Open SourceFirebase Alternative. This is super intriguing for me. I haven't had a need to play with this yet, but have been looking for an excuse.
- Vite: Next Generation Frontend Tooling. It appears to be a build tool for JS projects. Very interested to try this out.