Vincent Ritter

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simple blogging

Project posts JSON/RSS Feed...

Following on with the Scribbles blog custom domain... it actually links to your public blog, for example here is my test one. That's a random slug, which is changeable. When you use a custom domain, it'll check in the database for which blog matches the given hostname. Bit of a mess for now.

Here's a quick sneak peek at a Scribbles blog. That's running on a custom domain, which I wedged in just now so that the app handles the lookup of the correct blog, it won't be launching with that though haha. But hope you get the feel for it and how it'll look.

I actually made Scribbles with the single user in mind also, so it could be hosted by yourself. It works pretty well. Once you register, it will disable registration and the homepage becomes your public posts.

Here's a quick demo video of the Scribbles interface (no sound). I go through some basic text entry, then I show the dropdown and also keyboard navigation. Then I figured out that drag and drop from the desktop doesn't work whilst recording 🤣

Right, one last Scribbles screen grab, the post overview page for your public page. Super simple.

More Scribbles progress today, especially around adding some "profile" info to your page, including image. Then I worked on showing a post, and here is my minimal take on it. It'll probably stay like that and I'll just tweak some of the spacing. At the end of the article there is your blog info.

Haha, I don't need alcohol... I just need to use a bit of skew. Not doing that again πŸ₯΄

Some Scribbles UI bits today, mainly around displaying empty states for drafts and public posts. I like the chaotic background for drafts πŸ˜‹πŸ€·β€β™‚οΈ

Spent some time on Scribbles yesterday. My main pain point was battling with CORS issues with Backblaze B2. Because I need to directly upload image from the editor. Their CLI never worked, nor did any settings in their admin panel. So now using AWS S3, with B2 as the backup/mirror location. Bliss.

Alright, last one for today. Scribbles editor in dark mode... because my computer just switched over, so I thought I'll tackle it. You can also see the slight blur effect in the toolbar.

Here's the empty editor for Scribbles. It'll autofocus onto the post title.

Been styling out a working editor for Scribbles. Simple and clean. Next up, adding options to save as draft, public or private post.

Made a slow start to Scribbles today. Gotta start somewhere. Want to keep this as clean and minimal as possible.

Code Challenge: Scribbles

Over 3 years ago, I had a very similar idea to HEY World, with a simple blogging flow to just write. This was, and is, also partially inspired by spending time on and writing there.

I still want to explore this concept where you just simply write, and publish, with your standard RSS feeds and a public viewing page – with super simple styling to just get your words out there. No themes and nothing fancy.

I find it super useful to try and keep up with creating something that I can just explore without boundaries, whilst keeping things simple, light and fun.

If you've been following me for a while, you know I like creating things, from web to apps, so I want to continue this trend β€” because I already have enough to do!

So why a code challenge? It's what I name these... and it'll be an MVP (minimum viable product) and I want to challenge myself to go from zero to something in two weeks. 🤷‍♂️😅

The last time I said two weeks it was much longer because I stopped in-between. Ideally I would like to one day launch something really "tiny" within 2 days. In fact, tinylytics was done mainly over one weekend and then I iterated over it for a few weeks β€” now it's getting updates on a near weekly basis.

So what is "Scribbles"?

Scribbles are exactly that, just scribbles, in other words: long form blog posts and thoughts (no micro posts though) that you may want to share with others via RSS or a public facing page.

The plan right now for the MVP is the following:

  • A simple editor in the web app, for blog text and title input, including inline images.
  • Save your posts either as "public" or "private" – public means it will be available to view by everyone, private will only be for you or a select view members (for example a family) with a special link/RSS feed. You can also save them as drafts.
  • A public page, with your "public" posts and a simple profile on top of your public page.

Some stretch goals (but most likely afterwards):

  • Allow you to email your posts to a special email address, which means you can write your posts in any given email program (with options in the web app on how to handle these).
  • Allow grouped private posts, using tags, which you can separate into different private pages or RSS feeds – may it be "Family" or "Subscribers".

And what about the technology stack?

You know me, I'm a Ruby on Rails guy, so I'll continue this trend, however in addition to that, I would love to explore:

  • Kamal Deploy, allowing me to deploy with ease.
  • Using SQLite as my production database using Litestack.... EXCUSE ME, WTF? Yeah... 😅

I'm a huge, and super happy, user of Hatchbox for all my Ruby based projects (all of them), but I wanted to try this on my own using Kamal, because I always feel afraid of servers.

Where can I find out more and follow along?

Easy peasy... this blog and the RSS feed of course, plus on my profile (which you can follow via Mastodon). There will also be a project specific section on my website here, with a project specific JSON feed. I'm also going to be posting to X, using the #buildinpublic hashtag. It'll be more or less the same micro posts I make here. I know I know β€” I've made a few friends here, which is nice for me (so a huge thank you for following me there).

Next steps:

I'll probably take the day off now 😅 Nah, I'm just preparing a few things. There is no holding page just yet either, and I think this time around it will be the last thing I do.

There's already login logic and the logo set, so now to get the first interface out and do a few teasers.

Thanks for reading, and hope you enjoy this series ✌️❀️