Welcome to inorganik 4.0!
February 23, 2023
Welcome to my new website, completely rewritten from the ground up for the 4th time. Building this site was a great way to learn Next.js and Tailwind, both of which I really enjoy. They have their quirks, but what framework doesn't.
I'll be shutting down my virtual private server which I have maintained for the last 10 years (various instances) in exchange for Vercel hosting. I used to upload files with SFTP, now I just push a commit and Vercel deploys the site, which is pretty awesome! The VPS has served a lot of purposes which now lots of different free services fulfill:
- PHP hosting with Apache - this site runs on node, and Vercel uses AWS and even auto-deploys api routes to Lambda functions
- MySQL and MongoDB hosting - this site is static, but I mostly use Firebase for my DB needs which has a great free tier
- Email for my domains which relayed to my personal gmail with virtual inboxes - Google domains provides free email aliases for my domains
- A private git remote - GitHub used to charge $7/mo for private repos, now they're free
The VPS taught me a lot of Linux command-line skills and I'll never forget the pain of setting up my first SSL certificate, which now is super easy thanks to EFF's certbot. But it still required ongoing maintenance and I had to rebuild it every few years to keep things up-to-date.
The history of inorganik.net stretches back to 2007, and is a reflection of all the changes the web has undergone since then. I thought it would be cool to take a look back on the various incarnations, starting with the first!
Inorganik 1.0 - Flash
Some time in 2006 I bought a book on Flash and built inorganik.net, launched in 2007. It had a resolution of 750 x 600 pixels. At the time this would fill up most of your CRT display! The site landed me my first job as a "web designer", building Flash ads and marketing emails for Richmond American Homes.
New open standards created in the mobile era, such as HTML5, will win on mobile devices (and PCs too). Perhaps Adobe should focus more on creating great HTML5 tools for the future, and less on criticizing Apple for leaving the past behind.
Interesting how Adobe is in the process of acquiring the web-based design tool, Figma for $20 billion. (Always bet on open standards.) Which leads us to...
Inorganik 2.0 - WordPress
WordPress was all the rage in 2010. I bought a book on PHP and MySQL and built the next version of inorganik which was a custom WordPress theme. It sported the tagline "appealing to your subconscious desires" (???).
The site had 3 "skins" which could be toggled. It helped get me my next job as a "digital art director" at a boutique design firm in Denver called Ubiquity where I did all sorts of web development and even some iOS development.
Inorganik 3.0 - Static HTML and JS
In 2013 I became an independent contractor and rebuilt my site to show off my work. This version of the site has been revised many times but more or less stayed the same over the last 10 years. You can check the wayback machine to see the many changes.
Inorganik 4.0 - Next.js
Which brings us to the current version officially launching today. I used the rich docs provided by Next.js and Tailwind, and my previous knowledge of React. It reflects how the web is constantly evolving and as a web developer you have to be willing to constantly learn new skills.
Thanks for reading. Here's to the web!