I'm Finally Going to Build a Conveyor Belt

Content creators used to host everything themselves. Whether sharing blog posts, images, videos, or discussion boards, people hacked it together on their own.

Then we moved into SaaS solutions. Instead of maintaining blog software, you could use Blogger or Medium. Instead of hosting images yourself, you could use Flickr or Instagram. Videos? Youtube and TikTok. Discussion sites? Twitter and Reddit. We all flocked to the cloud, which made a lot of things better.

But it made our personal websites look pretty lame. Without any content to host, we just ended up telling this story:

  1. Hi this is my website
  2. Find me on these other sites: blah, blah, blah, and blah

Which isn't super compelling.

What about Linktree? They didn't actually change this story much, they just gave people templates to tell it in a more standardised way. This is some person named Jon Bell, and here's his deeply boring Linktree page:

It serves a purpose, but it's a very narrow one. I don't think people need a hosted way to link to a bunch of websites. And even if they did, Linktree did it.

On the other hand, I have an idea that I've wanted for about 15 years, and I think I finally know how to progress with it. Imagine Linktree, but instead of boring links to external content, it would combine everything into a single feed of everything you're up to. That could be cool.

So let's say I write this blog post, then share a few images, then publish a song, then another blog post, then upload a video. Let's say they're all on different services. Why shouldn't they all show up in a single stream? Why can't they?

So that's what I'm going to be working on. Here are some notes to myself:

  1. First I need everything to show up on a single page, as HTML (This works now)
  2. Next I need that page to be an RSS feed (Coming right up)
  3. Then I want to store everything into a single database for historical reasons
  4. The page should automatically pull from the DB, not ping each RSS each time
  5. Not everything will come directly from an external RSS. Sometimes it'd be nice to submit a post manually, as part of this app.
  6. And those manual posts should have categorisation. So I should be able to add a quick post, tag it as "comic" or whatever, and have everything work

So that's my new project!