Just Start Building

Advice on getting something off the ground
3 min read

For the 101st post I’ve written for this site, I wanted to reflect on the journey of this site and offer some advice to those who are looking to start something.

A little history

This site has been online for about 8 and a half years now. There’s exactly 100 posts I’ve written, about 80 of which are actually public, and the rest are drafts or private posts.

I started this site when I was back at UConn, studying for my computer science degree. I distinctly remember the day I actually decided to set up Github Pages to put the site online, in October of 2015. If I remember correctly, I was originally inspired by some tech blogs I was reading at the time. I remember some of the first iterations of the design I wrote during my CSE1102 class in the Agriculture building. And the constant redesigns and tweaks I made to the site over the years.

Back then, it was … interesting. For a while, I was really into these large hero images I pulled off unsplash. Not exactly sure why I thought that was a good idea. My earlier musings, which are still online, are a little cringeworthy to read now.

I’ll recount some of the history of this site below, but I won’t bury the lede too much: Just start building.

Just start building!

Much of the current state of things on this site is driven through the constant updates, tweaks, and learnings from the previous iterations. If not for publishing the first few posts, I might’ve stopped and never gotten the site to the point where it is now.

If you shy away from releasing something, in pursuit of perfection - you might not learn all the things you would’ve along the way.

This same thing goes for startups, product releases, etc. - if you’re waiting for the perfect moment, you might never get there. Just start building to solve problems for your customers, and iterate based on your learnings about your market & users along the way.

Versions

Original Version

The first year it was online, I tweaked the design quite a bit. First, it started with no hero at all and just plain post text. Then I added one. I was really into these large hero images at the time.

Updated Background

I updated this header quite often.

Minimalism

Then, I went totally minimalistic for a little while…

Slightly more recently

And then going back to a design more reminiscent of the first versions, with a sidebar to clutter things. Looking back, this was somehow worse than before. However, this is very much the starting point of the current design.

Modern-ish

Then, we start to see things much closer to what we have today.

Today

And finally, we have the current design. I’m pretty happy with it for now, but chances are, it’ll change again in the future.

Change Log

  • 6/17/2024 - Initial Revision

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