Stories about Software


The Phoenix of My New Site from the Ashes of my Battle with CSS

It wasn’t pretty.  There I stood, knuckles scraped raw, a black eye, and a nose that would probably never look quite the same way again.  But you should have seen the other guy.  I had emerged, victorious, my site finally behaving the way I wanted, and CSS lay quivering on the ground, a shattered mass of pound signs, periods, and curly brackets.  To use the word “literally” the way kids these days use it, that’s literally what happened earlier this evening.


You may have noticed some changes to my site if you’ve been visiting over the last few days (not the theme as much as content and layout).  Those are now more or less complete, pending any weird, little things that I notice.  There are a lot of changes, but none that should affect your consumption of DaedTech in any but a positive way.  Still, I encourage you to check out the site.

I slimmed down the menu options so that you can think of the site roughly this way, in order of menu items:

  • The blog (which is now “Home”)
  • Things I offer for free or pay (“Products“)
  • Things I do, mainly for pay (“Services“)
  • Things I recommend, or at least use (“Resources, since removed”)
  • I explain myself (“About“)

And, that’s it.  No sub-menus or complex navigation.  I wanted to keep things simple.  Along those lines, I’ve cleaned out my site side gutter a good bit, moving all of the stuff about my books and Pluralsight courses to “Products.”  I have no idea whether this will affect sales or not, but these are the kind of things I’m getting interested in measuring, so I might soon install some kind of heat map.  Right now, I’ll just have to see if my sales dip.  But I like it better.  The old gutter felt like a switch statement that was expanding ominously and sorely in need of some polymorphism or something.

I’d like to speak to the resources page.  Over the last several years, I’ve gotten a lot of reader questions along the lines of, “what’s that thing with the dots in your Chess TDD videos” or “what tool do you recommend for text editing” or “what programming books should I buy?”  I usually just gave off the cuff answers, but now my answer is always going to be, “check out my resources page.”  I’ll add to it and modify it as time goes by.  Two important things about that page:

  1. My level of endorsement for things there varies from “I use this and, meh, it’s something I use,” to “this is the best thing ever.”  Everything up there is something I have used or that I currently, actively use, but its inclusion there doesn’t necessarily mean I’d pitch it to you at a party over beers.
  2. Where applicable, I used affiliate linking there, meaning that for some of those links, if you buy the product, I get a commission from the vendor.  Affiliate links have absolutely no impact on the price of the items you purchase or your experience at all.  Still, if it makes you uncomfortable, you can always navigate to the site not through my link.  I still recommend (or at least use) the stuff there.  I built the page first, by listing everything that would go up there, and then did a second pass to see if there were affiliate programs for the stuff I’d picked.

I’ll probably do a post on affiliate linking for tech bloggers at some point.  But, in the interim, if you have a site and want to monetize it even a little, I’d recommend reading up a bit (and feel free to email me with questions).  Compared to sponsor ads and product pop ups, it’s an extremely low key, non-invasive way to earn a little bit of revenue.  I offer this mainly because I sort of wish someone had explained some of these concepts to me years ago.

One final change that I’ll mention is that under Services and About, I’ve started talking about the increasing share of my living that comes from writing these days, and how I’ve started to stumble into this interesting business model of “tech evangelism as a service.”  I’m writing a lot and enjoying it, so I now have a list of clients I’ve worked with, doing consulting around tech blogging.  Under “About”, I have a list of other sites where you can see posts that I’ve made (look for some new additions to that coming soon, as well).

So, that’s it for the DaedTech service announcement.  I’ll get back to regularly scheduled posts next week, including some Chess TDD and one I’m working on about how to ‘win’ at meetings that I’m hoping you’ll enjoy.