Website Redesign

Last week, I wrote about how I implemented my own static site generator, using a makefile. At the same time, I redesigned the site, as previously it used the Hyde theme for sites built using Jekyll. In redesigning it, I aimed to make the site as simple as possible without making it unpleasant to read or navigate.


A big part of the design ethos came from the Motherf***ing websites (which, fair warning, do contain quite a bit of profanity): original, better, and best. Essentially, I decided I didn’t want to have to load anything from external sources, set up any kind of fancy layout, or run any JavaScript. Among other things, this means that the site will always use fonts you have installed on your device. I’m using a pretty extensive font stack to minimize the chance of getting stuck with, for example, Arial for text and Courier New for code, but I can’t guarantee that you won’t see one of those if you’re using an old or uncommon platform. For this website, my first choices of text and code font are IBM Plex Sans and IBM Plex Mono, respectively, and if it’s important to you, you can download them for free from here. (EDIT 2020-10-03: I’ve since removed that font stack, and so your browser default font will be used. If you don’t like it, I suggest you change it.)

I also took inspiration from Contrast Rebellion and SB Nation.


It took a few iterations before I settled on the current structure of the website. Initially, I was planning on having separate pages for my work experience, projects, and blog, just as I had on the old version of the site. That changed when I came across Vatsal Ambastha’s blog while browsing Brutalist Websites for inspiration. Reading it, I realized that there was no reason not to put all of the information about myself, along with links to blog posts, on the landing page. After all, I don’t have that much content I want to include. This structure is simpler, easier to navigate, and less cluttered with links.

Things Left to Do

There are a couple more ideas to improve the site that I’m toying with, too:

If you find any issues with the website, or think there’s something that could be improved, send me an email at jdwinters96@gmail.com or open an issue.