What Once Was

Or, The Senseless and Unremarkable Life of claycarson.net

I looked it up. 06-06-07 (Might have had a different trajectory if it was 06-06-06) I registered claycarson.net. The .com was taken by a photographer in Colorado. I later added the .com in 2011 when he didn’t renew. I was thrilled. But .net felt like home.

There is a Wordpress database backed up and on a hard drive in the garage that contains the archive of what this site once was. It probably contains posts up until around 2012. Most of it was tips for Mac OS X and how I setup my machines, and tech productivity hacks. I regrettably purged the site in 2012, although a few posts from before that remain. From then until 2018 I ran the site as just a linked list blog with intermittent commentary. In 2018, on the earlier side of the resurgence of Newsletters, the site became a publishing ground for my newsletter.

The newsletter became a forcing function to get me to read and follow up on all the links I bookmarked during the month and then share them with anyone who had an interest in what I was interested in.

I thought about digging up those hard drives as a part of this redesign. While those posts are certainly valueless to a modern society, the thought and care that went into them might be a nice reflection of what was once here, like some kind of ancestor, or a ghost of my teenager version of being on the Internet.

I don’t think I ever said anything that anyone else hasn’t already said in those posts. I think that is why they aren’t here.

Apart from a brief period, this site resolved to a Wordpress site that lived with many aesthetics, various content, and was inspired by many different versions of Clay who have come and gone over the last 15+ years.

In the last 5 years or so, static site generators became interesting to me. I love the idea of generating a site that is as stripped down and fast as it possibly can be. Served only by static HTML files, load in the lightest touch of CSS, and off you go.

At that time, I also began to learn git and learn to deploy static sites with Github Pages, Netlify, and Vercel. I familiarized myself with Ruby, Go, and React to build sites with Jekyll, Hugo, and using Next.js, respectively.

This site in its current encarnation is served with Hugo and Netlify. *subject to change at any time

All that to say, this site is a tool for me to learn. It changes, grows, and (likely) breaks at times. It serves as therapy and is something I am proud of.

Hi, that's me!

How kind of you to make your way down here.

A bit about me: I can be interested in anything, for better or worse. I love photography, travel, golf, and baseball. My latest pursuit is learning the guitar. I write a rad newsletter that I publish monthly.

Follow @claycarson on Twitter, Mastodon or Instagram.