hazardous

thoughts, things, etc. from andrew snow

welcome to hazardous! although like any personal site it's always a WIP, you can read posts roughly divided up into life (for most things), linux (tech-oriented writing), as well as information about some small projects, and how to get in touch. there's also some audio!! thanks for stopping by!


fresh content: some music for february, and some milestones

currently

02.23.21

felt productive so i posted some stuff; links up above!

02.21.21

merry new year's! it only took me a handful of months to write this update. been busy in real life, just trying to pay bills and whatnot. haven't done much behind the scenes, besides occasionally tunneling into the server to run updates for debian.

looking to polish a draft i have written on my current stack - still trying to resolve some complex issues i have with regards to microsoft inexplicably surging to the top of the development platform rankings. that being said, writing this update post was as simple as opening VSCode and connecting to this server. upon logging in, this file opened up and i just started typing. after this sentence i will save it, and that is the extent of effort it takes to push written content to a website in 2021.

recently:

12.14.20

it might be time to think about getting a proper frontpage set up - maybe! :) in the meantime i've got a new project up. it's a self-contained irssi deployment, which allows you to simply clone a git repo, run a config script, and hit the ground rolling with a tricked-out irssi setup that uses sane defaults.

11.26.20

happy thanksgiving!

10.22.20

just checking in with a november update. it's weird to even think we're already on the cusp of a new year; the covid-19 pandemic among everything else happening really shrouded life in a fog, and it feels like March was just a month or two ago.

not too much to post about as far as the website goes - little tweaks here and there. i have a few drafts that i might try to get done before the end of the year, but it's been kinda hard to just sit down and focus. regardless, here's to the end of 2020 - hardly knew ya, won't miss ya! :)

10.22.20

what the hell. i've only just now figured out how to switch (most) traffic over to http/2, and within days i read that facebook is already moving to http/3 - this is bullshit!

10.12.20

woo! continuing with the general theme of "huge backend changes you'll never notice by viewing the website", i believe i have finally completed the transition from apache2 to nginx as my webserver. i'll make the effort to perhaps write this up asap, before the details begin fading from memory.

the basic setup was just about effortless, and ultimately the more nuanced stuff was difficult for no actual reason other than my own expectations, coming from apache. basically: i overthought alot of it, and in the end i discovered the key to a smooth and sleek nginx setup lies in its simplicity. apache is a server that has been powering websites since forever, and so alot of its configuration relating to modern tech like http/2, fastcgi, SSL etc involved alot of jank.

so going into the nginx setup i sort of expected there would be alot of jank. it was a real shot-in-my-own-foot. ultimately, i wound up only having to edit the .conf file for this website - no extra fiddling with the nginx defaults save for having to disable certbot's defaults and swap in my own.

the trickiest part was getting comfortable with using 301 returns and URL rewrites to make sure all possible ways of entering the URL would wind up leading the user from http://www.zardo.us to https://ha.zardo.us. in the end i was left with about ~6 lines of code to handle this - while trying to figure it out, this had ballooned up to something like ~20 lines of code, multiple if-then rewrites and 301 returns.

but here i am - with a webserver that gives Lighthouse audits that are green across the board, though i am still going to be considering ways to boost the accessibility score which was the lowest. hopefully there will be a way to have my cake and eat it as far as this metric is concerned - it takes a big hit because my colors do not provide enough contrast apparently. i think the solution will be to dive into the Mecha engine and create some fallbacks that will display a pure black&white site if viewed with a screen reader - which i probably should have done in the first place.

10.03.20

still here, not much has changed with the site. few new articles, et cetera. renamed the 'linux' category, and you'll now find the articles filed under the 'tech' section - seems like it's a more fitting title as the content concerns more than just that particular operating system.

despite my satisfaction with mecha, i'm always looking around at other static-site generators. might make a decent subject for a new article. alot of these engines suffer from a reliance on external tools to really work - which makes sense as using e.g. go or python is necessary to run a local-side generator, and this is why i prefer the more semi-static nature of my current setup, which generates content in the more traditional on-the-fly sense, although it uses caching to remove the need for re-generating content once it's rendered, and it builds the site from a directory comprised of markdown files organized by file structure.

08.09.20

little bit here, little bit there - i know it's something of a cliche but man, it really is the things which appear simple which require the most work!

not much has changed visually, however, over the past month i've had a few chances to hop onto a variety of desktops and finally check out the website across windows, mac, and linux operating systems, on a few different browsers. the only really outstanding issue was traced back to my inclusion of some missing files called to from the CSS, and in certain scenarios, this caused the browser to throw out the entire markup for the selector.

besides this, worked a bit on the transition to a variable-based stylesheet. i'm really beginning to grow fond of it, and i dunno, maybe i missed it but i dont remember the sort of widespread excitement over this as i've seen with other nice innovations.

for me the most useful application is with font sizing:

:root {
    --font-weight: 400;
    --font-size: 1rem;
}

.main p {
    font-size: var(--font-size);
}

.main h1 {
    font-size: calc(var(--font-size) * 2);
    font-weight: calc(var(--font-weight) * 1.75);
}

.main h2 {
    font-size: calc(var(--font-size) * 1.75);
    font-weight: calc(var(--font-weight) * 1.50);
}

.main h3 {
    font-size: calc(var(--font-size) * 1.5);
    font-weight: calc(var(--font-weight) * 1.5);
}

when defining the unit of measurement as em / rem, this pretty much guarantees legible text at a user's preferred size - and with variables, you can always maintain proportion among different styling options regardless of user setting.

08.09.20

wooo! so, after chewing over my ever-growing tasklist, i finally got a bunch of birds stoned at once: i wiped, refreshed, and reupped the server. after moving hazardous over, i started trying to clean it up... long story short here is, i wound up asking myself, what if instead of chipping away at unused CSS, i just started from scratch and built up?

turns out, probably should have done that a long time ago...

so here it is! version 2.0!!

still some odds and ends to get sorted out, mainly to do with the plyr.js youtube embedding script. not too worried about it because i quite liked being able to just toss a spotify playlist up with no issue.

for older updates: archived frontpage