January challenge

During the month of January my wife suggested a challenge for both of us to do a drawing every day for the month, as something new and fun to do (we are both also Art graduates having met at University in the 90s).

The specific type of drawing was to be a map.

And we did it. Here are my drawings for the month.


Decided I am going to use this site to build my first Full Site Editing WordPress theme.

So all HTML, JSON and CSS. No PHP (well some PHP obvs, it’s still WordPress. You need (for now at least) functions.php so you can add stuff like a custom CSS file and other stuff). I’m going to use this theme by Fränk Klein as a starting point, turning everything off so I can gradually turn it back on again.

I’ve been building themes since 2004, maybe even 2003. It’s going to be weird. 18/19 years of pretty much the same syntax. No idea when I’ll launch it, but sometime soon.

Sleep well sweet prince.

<?php if (have_posts()) : ?>		
	<?php while (have_posts()) : the_post(); ?>
		<?php the_title(); ?>
		<?php the_content(); ?>
	<?php endwhile; ?>
<?php endif; ?>

Website goes to 11(ty)

I’ve been playing around with Nunjucks and various static site generators (SSGs) over the last couple of years now. Building my smaller non-CMSy sites seasonal.today, richholman.com, phonebox.photos using a mixture of techniques and build scripts.

I’ve loved it, its’s like olden days web development, HTML, CSS, Javascript but with super powers. Gulp scripts taking the mundane tasks such as image resizing and optimisation, favicon generation, script and styles pre and post processing and much more.

Around a year ago (I think, pandemics have destroyed my concept of time) I started to use 11ty after playing around the edges for a while. It’s even more of a delight, it get’s out of the way, taking care of all the hard stuff so wonderfully. Local and remote data becomes such an easy thing. It’s concept of ‘collections’ is excellent, here’s my content type based on a local data file (say an object) or remote fetch (API, graphQL), here’s the template I want it to use and voila here’s the output.

A list of folders

You can use Nunjucks natively (or Liquid, Markdown, Moustache, Handlebars and more). Passing front matter into the markdown files allows for page / folder specific variables.

Anyhoo, after converting a couple of my sites to 11ty seasonal.today and phonebook.photos both with data defined locally I wanted to try out something I’ve been meaning to do for a while….headless WordPress 💪.

And where better (and safer) to start than this blog as the source data.

There was a bit faffing about but I took a lot of inspiration from these articles / repos: How to use 11ty with Headless WordPress and deploy to Netlify, WordPress & Eleventy part one: WordPress, 11ty-wordpress-graphql.

So I now have a mirror site for this blog all built in 11ty. 11ty.dgw.ltd

I’ve blocked search engines from indexing it obvs. I tried to have the smallest footprint for it as well, so no client-side JS, 26KB of CSS. I even used some Tailwind (don’t generally like it, too many class names for this ageing brain) but I really liked this approach to typography. Just using the classname ‘prose’ on the container. Nice. I eschewed my goto build using Gulp and just do it all the build with npm built-in scripts.

I would like to trigger a build of the site when I hit publish on a post from WordPress, but given I post about once a decade running npm run build and git add commit push is not exactly a big deal.

Update: I rebuilt the 11ty instance and now this post, in a sort of hall of mirrors type afair, exists on the 11ty instance. 👻👻👻


This is blog is now officially old enough to drink, so dogwonder.co.uk is off to the pub for a shandy.

Where did all the years go eh? That also means this is 18 years of WordPress – although this wasn’t my first WP site but not far off. I think this started on version 1.2, and here I am publishing this from a ‘smart phone’ using ’the block editor’ (back in my day it was all fields etc).

Anyhoo we’re (?) off to raise glass.

Till 19.

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