Hyperlink Forum

Exploring personal websites

For hyperlink.academy (also see Hyperlink.academy: a school created betwen personal sites) I’m running a “course” on personal websites.

In all honesty its not much of a course, more an excuse to have an open discussion about how people are building their websites and what they’re doing with em, all in the context of learning of course.

Last Thursday I had the first conversation with @bts which was fantastic. You can catch the recording here, though I really should’ve got Brendan to record, instead of getting the crappy stream quality on my end. There’s still some great dialogue in there though, even if the visuals leave a little to be desired.

This Thursday will be a conversation with Tom Critchlow, if you’re interested, lemme know!

What I want to learn

I have less of an explicit goal in this, I’m more just excited about my website, and want to talk to people about theirs. My hope is that by finding the similarities and differences in our experiences we can get more excited, and get others hyped to boot.

I want to learn:

  • How to facillitate good discussions
  • What enables and blocks people building their sites
  • How people think of experimentation and learning in the context of personal websites

Totally interested and down to attend the discussion this Thursday. It’s just the Jitsi room right? Is there any enrollment process involved?

And just listened to the recording of your @bts discussion. It was awesome! Makes me excited about the format and future installments. Will you by chance upload the one you did for your site @jaredpereira?

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@cjeller1592 yeah it’s just the jitsi room. You can RSVP here though: https://www.mixily.com/event/2357473870011815422 !

I actually never ended up doing the one for my site on that first date, going to reschedule it for a later one hopefully.

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Sounds great! I RSVP’d and am looking forward to it!

Had fun chatting about this @jaredpereira! Curious to see how you might synthesize what you learn from these / put together some tips and takeaways for other personal website artisans. (At some point I also want to put together notes about things I’ve learned that might be useful for people doing similar website projects…basics and/or WordPress minutiae.)

Yeah in hindsight we should have figured out a better screen recording setup, whoops…maybe we can follow up with another one next year, hopefully I’ll have some more websites under my belt by then :smile:

Yeah synthesizing is definitely on my mind, unsure what the best output would be. Currently the plan is just to do a bunch more and see what structures emerge.

One end of the spectrum could be putting something together like https://runyourown.social (buildyourown.website is available!), on the other something like a list of common patterns or approaches, or even just a list of quotes from people paired with their sites…

Would definitely appreciate thoughts/ideas if you have em! And definitely down for another round next year!

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Got the recording of Tom’s session here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=W3UPw1zgP_Q&list=PLEXbN99LY3OCarUeXcxWeZzOelXQvVdAA&index=2&t=303s !

I’m looking forward to seeing this playlist grow!

Also Tom described this as a blog tour, like cribs but for blogs :stuck_out_tongue:

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Realize I didn’t post the last one here either, so here’s both Jame’s and Chris’s in the playlist! https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLEXbN99LY3OCarUeXcxWeZzOelXQvVdAA

I’ll be on vacation next week so taking a break from these. It seems like a good point to stop and take stock and maybe try and figure out how to produce useful insights from the series. One idea is just cataloging “features” that different personal sites have, and putting together a list of them. Another could be in just extracting quotes from folks, though that’ll have a larger overhead…

Also thinking about how I can improve the interview process. Doing more research into folks’ sites could certainly help, maybe even pulling out the features that resonate with me before in order to dig into them on the call.

This could also go in a totally different direction of something like personal site workshops for people to actually build their sites?

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Cataloging features would be great, especially if there’s overlap. That way people can see different ways to craft, say, an “About” page or structure their blog posts. You could also compile a list of all the different stacks people use (Wordpress, Github pages, etc.).

There is a lot of different ways you can visualize this information too. Ways that come to mind are Steve Krouse’s The Whole Code Catalog and even something like Are.na.


Hey y’all! I’m kicking this off again, with a tour of The Local Yarn by Joel Dueck. I’m particularly excited for this one as he’s using Pollen to build the site, and plans for it also to generate a book. Definitely up your alley @bts

You can RSVP here: https://www.mixily.com/event/724450749453973220 !


Sweet yes this sounds great! Love this site, I remember running across it maybe like a year ago and reading a ton of Joel’s posts. I forgot the part about using Pollen for custom website/bookmaking experiments — super cool and I’m excited to hear more!

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Got Joel’s recording up!

This week @cjeller1592 kindly offered to facillitate a tour of my site, so y’all can RSVP here if that sounds interesting:

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