Home stream

Ben wrote a post a little while back about maybe organising his home page differently. It’s currently a stream.

That prompted Om to ask is “stream” as a design paradigm over? Mind you, he’s not talking about personal websites:

Across the web, one can see “streams” losing their preeminence. Social networks are increasingly algorithmically organized, so their stream isn’t really a free-flowing stream. It is more like a river that has been heavily dammed. It is organized around what the machine thinks we need to see based on what we have seen in the past.

Funnily enough, I’ve some recent examples of personal homepages become more like social networks, at least in terms of visual design. A lot of people I know are liking the recent redesigns from Adam and Jhey.

Here on my site, my home page is kind of a stream. I’ve got notes, links, and blog posts one after another in chronological order. The other sections of my site are ways of focusing in on the specific types of content links, short notes, blog posts in my journal.

Behind the scenes, entries those separate sections of my site are all stored in the same database table. In some ways, the separation into different sections of the site is more like tagging. So the home page is actually the simplest bit to implement: grab the latest 20 entries out of that database table.

I don’t make too much visual distinction between the different kinds of posts. My links and my notes look quite similar. And if I post a lot of commentary with a link, it looks a lot like a blog post.

Maybe I should make them more distinct, visually. Because I actually like the higgedly-piggedly nature of a stream of different kinds of stuff. I want the vibe to be less like a pristine Apple store, and more like a chaotic second-hand bookstore.

Going back to what Ben wrote about his site:

As of right now, the homepage is a mix of long-form posts, short thoughts, and links I consider interesting, presented as a stream. It’s a genuine representation of what I’m reading and thinking about, and each post’s permalink page looks fine to me, but it doesn’t quite hold together as a whole. If you look at my homepage with fresh eyes, my stream is a hodgepodge. There’s no through line.

For me, that’s a feature, not a bug. There’s no through line on my home page either. I like that.

Have you published a response to this? :


Frank Meeuwsen

Na mijn blogpost van gisteren kreeg ik wat opmerkingen. Inderdaad, mijn blog is mijn plek. Mijn plek voor notitie. Een blog als notitieblok noemt Erwin Blom het. Dat zou het prima kunnen zijn. Dat is het al twintig jaar. Zonder pretenties. Zonder groots vooropgezet plan. Natuurlijk heb ik dat wel een paar keer een beetje afgetast. Zoals mijn serie over WordPress en het indieweb. Zoals de Mastodon startgids. Maar ik heb niet het geduld om dit jarenlang bij te houden. DE serie over Indieweb is al weer zo verouderd. De plugins zijn veranderd, ik zou de blogpost er ook moeten aanpassen. Maar daar heb ik dan geen zin in.

Anyway. Mijn blog als kladblok. Eigenlijk zoals een van ‘s Neerlands eerste bloggers dat ook deed. Tonie’s Kladblok bracht mij aan het bloggen.

Wat ik dan weer hoopgevend vind is dat ik op andere plekken soortgelijke geluiden hoor. Jeremy Keith die schrijft over persoonlijke homepages als sociale netwerken en Matthias die hier op antwoord hoe hij persoonlijke homepages ziet: Als “een chaotische tweedehands boekwinkel”

Daar voel ik me wel toe aangetrokken. Mijn site is ook wat chaotisch. Een beetje zoals mijn eigen interesses, tijdverdrijf en projecten zijn.

Desondanks mag het hier wel iets georganiseerder zijn. Zelfs in een chaotische boekwinkel staan genres nog wel enigszins bij elkaar. Kun je in de kasten nog een beetje organisatie vinden. Of in elk geval die kasten waar je eigen interesse is te vinden. Maar inderdaad, de Frankopedia mag meer tweedehands boekwinkel zijn en minder Apple Store…


# Wednesday, February 15th, 2023 at 8:08am

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Previously on this day

2 years ago I wrote Design leadership on the Clearleft podcast

The first episode of season two is here.

7 years ago I wrote Handling redirects with a Service Worker

A bugfix for Chrome’s errant behaviour.

9 years ago I wrote Workshoppers of the world

Divide and take over.

15 years ago I wrote The L words

Oh, what a difference an Oh makes.

20 years ago I wrote Music for the masses

I’m back from a day in London where I enjoyed the closest thing a geek like me is going to get to culture.

21 years ago I wrote Nokia XHTML Browser

This is one of the best arguments I’ve seen so far for coding in XHTML-strict.