Site Refurbishments Take Time

I still like the idea of Digital Gardens which, since I posted the plan to make this website one, I have discovered are an entire sub-culture of websites. And as I’ve read more about these, what they are, and what the philosophy behind them are — slow, imperfect, small changes, which accumulate into something nice over time — I’ve also realised/decided that changing my website to try this different approach to online content will require taking the “gardening” approach to the switch itself. Small, gradual changes; otherwise I’ll never get it done. (It takes time to rebuild a website, who knew? ^^)

As part of exploring what this idea looks like, I managed to find the original website which inspired me to try this:

As well as an essay and mission statement, of sorts, on digital gardening:

And finally, some other people’s gardens that I really like the look of (in addition to the 2 I just referenced):

Inspired by all these things, here’s the first little change: categories and graphical labels, aka. emojis, for these (you may have noticed that this post is in the category “sapling”)

  • :beans: seed — Seeds are things which I intend to write, but haven’t gotten beyond the prototyping/bullet-point/ideation stage. I’ll try my best to have these on the website, so that people can see what I’m up to and thinking about; usually, until now, they lived in a little green Leuchturm-notebook. Annoyingly, there is no seed emoji, so beans will have to do.
  • 🌱 sprout — Sprouts are the start of something bigger, like a full-blown blog post/essay (more on those shortly), but in its early stages. I expect these to be more expanded, paragraph-like bullet-points, but without the flow and structuring that a complete post has.
  • 🌿 sapling — Saplings are works which might be done, but need another look through (or don’t). Maybe there are some details which need clarification, or some sections need moving around, or similar. Or maybe I just decide that they’re actually fine, and nothing needs adjusting. I’m not quite happy with the name “shoot”, so that may change if I find a better term. Update 2024-04-18: I’m a lot happier with the word “sapling”! That’s staying!
  • 🌲 evergreen — These are the finished and polished posts, essays, tutorials, what have you. Although the name “evergreen” suggests that they never need adjusting, that’s will vary depending on the post (for example, my Arch Linux install guide definitely needs tending by now; oops), and so I might still change these from time to time.
  • 🪴 succulent — There is no succulent emoji! A travesty! Anyway. Succulents are little tips and tricks which are not quite big enough to warrant their own post. Quite often I stumble upon little command-line tools, neat tricks, and other “today-I-learned” kind of things, and these will be little potted succulents plants. (I may very well rectify this grave injustice and create my own little cute succulent emoji to make the world right ^^)

< fix beans, add something which rounds off >

Thomas Ekström Hansen
Thomas Ekström Hansen
PhD student in Computer Science

My interests include information visualisation, formal methods, and low-level programming.