Goodbye 2021

Hello there.

I’m going to keep this short but I wanted to drop by before 2021 ends. It’s been awhile since I posted on here. I haven’t felt like posting all that much. Also, I haven’t been doing as much either. It seems there’s enough to preoccupy myself with when it comes to looking at the news and well, we know what the news has been like this year and last as well.

The COVID-19 pandemic has put the world on hold for the time being. It seems like everything has changed. At the same time, we carry on, learning to deal with the reality the pandemic put us in. The way we have adapted shows that we are resilient and this virus is not going to shut us down completely. If 2021 has taught us anything, it’s that despite all the challenges brought on by the past, political ideology and outrage, here we still stand.

So goodbye 2021. May 2022 bring us a period of reckoning. We need healing.

The Code Speak Distribution System Has Launched!

I am proud to announce that this system has finally been released! After almost 2 years in development, I can finally present something that has taken a lot of work and research to pull off. Not only does this reduce the amount of work that I have to do in order to release program updates, but it provides a better experience for you.

I have also developed a client to go with the system as well. This will allow you to install and launch programs all from a single place. Instead of having to download everything separately, this enables you to keep everything organized. I decided to build this system for 2 reasons:

  • Automate and simplify the process of releasing programs and updates
  • Provide a better experience for accessing the various programs that have been released

I have not only built a client to access programs but have also made the same information available from this website. You can access the same information the client has access to from this page.

As this project has taken a lot of work and research I’m going to create another post just on my experiences as well as show how this project has included concepts that have been in other past projects as well. Now Secured Using Let’s Encrypt!

I have finally switched over to SSL using Let’s Encrypt! I have had this domain for over 10 years without SSL so it’s about time. I also set this as a requirement for myself in order to release the distribution system. I’m also aware that it’s standard practice to use SSL on a website. Google will rank my site higher now because it’s using SSL, so that’s a bonus in addition to this change.

Let’s Encrypt was actually enabled on my domain as a free service from my webhost so I didn’t have to purchase a certificate in order to do this. However, I had to acquire a certificate for the VPS that hosts some of the files linked on this site.

Statistics And The Code Speak Distribution System

This is something I wanted to be inherent to the distribution system. Anytime a program checks for an update, the system would log that request so that ultimately anyone can visit a page and see how many unique users are using each program and the version of the programs being used. I’ve been doing some thinking about this and how it relates to the GDPR and don’t think this is a direction I’d like to go at this time. I have gone over a decade without a statistics system, so it’s not like I have an urgent need for it!

One of the requirements for the GDPR is to make available an option for users to delete their data. Being as I’m not quite sure how I would implement this I don’t think this is something I’d like to do at this time. However, in the future this might be a direction that I can take. Those are my thoughts on the matter.

Trailing Slashes Removed From URLs

This is not something I’ve really consciously thought of until now. With the Code Speak Distribution System, part of the web frontend includes a changelog section for each program. I want to take a similar approach to a project I had done before to track version changes, although not everything on this page will be a part of the web frontend changelog section.

In wanting to get things right, I thought about the URL structure for the pages on my own site. I like the lack of a trailing slash better than I do a slash to end a URL. It is for this reason that the URLs on this site will no longer automatically include the trailing slash.

New Theme And Other Changes

When it comes to the design of my site, the previous theme worked but it wasn’t good enough. The main reason why I chose to go with a new theme was that I wanted to emphasize programming a bit more. To accomplish this I wanted a theme with a header image containing some code from one of my projects. I looked at so many themes trying to find one that worked for me and finally stumbled upon the one you’re looking at now.

Another change I have decided to make is the inclusion of the Contact and Donate pages to the main menu section. They were previously located in the footer on the left-hand side. This doesn’t really help things as someone may wish to get in contact with me or want to donate. The visibility of these links was a necessary part of this theme change.

Another change is that the archives page is now a child of the links page and can be found by hovering over the links item in the top menu.

The social media buttons are now no longer part of the footer but in the header area as smaller buttons.

And as always, do enjoy your stay on my site!