It's been a while since the last log.

The main reason for this has been the difficulty of maintainance. The site is being maintained manually, which takes mental effort I don't always have, considering many of the changes require scrubbing through a dozen files and making changes by hand, with precision, as opposed to running an automated process.

Every option I've evaluated so far of automating the process had at least one deal-breaking flaw.

Most options require that I install a couple gigabytes of additional software simply for running a command every once in a while. That is unacceptable for me. I see it as a waste of resources as a result of careless, fast-deploy coding. As a matter of fact, any installation I make ought to work out of the box. (Nevermind the issue of having dozens of extraneous, unnecessary files in the root of my working directory, attracting my attention unnecessarily. It can be difficult to focus on the right things with the few files that I already have in each of those.)

Most of the options also require complicated and/or rigid configurations post-installation. I'm by no means tech-illiterate, but that amount of work, even once, seems user-unfriendly to me. (This often crosses back into the previous point when it requires user to install packages via NPM, or Chocolatey, or Bundler, or any other package manage.)

This level of software management may be acceptable to developers who already spend their working time in such environments, but for regular users such as myself, it's overwhelming. I'm patient, but anything I can't wrap my head around in one sitting is something I'm not going to deal with barring pressing circumstance.

Going back to the basics with raw build tools is simply another example of the above. It is not user-friendly in any manner of speaking.

At the other end of the spectrum is guide-you-by-the-hand hosted-CMS solutions that don't make my cut either. I'm not incapable of making or arranging content: in fact, it's one of the greater passions of mine. What I need is a simple, practical, and quick way to transform raw data and composable templates into Web-acceptable matter.

Fortunately, I was able to find a great solution: Zola. It's a 20MB single-file executable, and given some tinkering and a single command, it produces exactly what I need. It's not perfect, but it's miles ahead every other solution I've encountered so far. I've been tinkering with it all day yesterday, only to confirm that it is pretty much what I've been looking for. It takes a little getting used to, mostly because I'm not used to writing templates and VS Code doesn't provide the same level of support it does to, say, HTML via Emmet.

So far, I've been able to automate getting content on the page with the right <head> contents: favicons, Open Graph, and other metadata that makes the page what it is to the browser and search engine robots. It appears by all means that it's entirely possible to automate all sorts of content – including project listing in the navigation bar, production log pages, and Mythos – so whenever you see this entry is when I'd figured out how to do just that.

(Of note is the fact that his also enables breaking production logs up based on date segments: years, months, and days – which effectively implements the feature some of the early readers of this site have suggested.)

I love this process: building something big and powerful out of small and simple parts. This is the engine that drives me towards procedural generation and emergent gameplay. The fact that I get to experience something like this in Web design – a major passion of mine – is exciting, to say the least.

The biggest concern this resolves is, of course, Mythos. It's a monumental project, and having it require exponential amounts of effort on addition of a new entry – which would've meant manually adding a link to it to every single existing page – would knock the air out of but the most driven developers. Any degree of automation brings this process significantly closed to the ground, meaning I can once again start adding and editing content to it.

Also, automated RSS and Atom feeds, so you no longer have to check into the site if you don't want to.