Create your own bookmark separators
I didn't think the day would come, but here we are.
Custom bookmark separators!
A giant leap in bookmark separator technology.
No one will be more excited about this than I am, which is fine, but humour me: For probably 90% of the lifespan of this website I've wanted to add this as a feature to the site. But man, implementing it would require databases, user accounts, all kinds of complex stuff that I might have dabbled with at most, but never actually implemented in a way that would be suitable for this. Well, I decided to make it happen.
Chrome bookmark separators are my life.
Okay, they're not, but it's felt like they have been over the last week or so that I've been working on this. I was determined to make it happen, and I'm proud to say that it's live and ready to be used!
You can now create an account from the main menu (or that link <--) and get straight to uploading your icons! You'll be able to use your own icon within literally 1 minute of clicking 'create an account' (if you're a fast typist and have a suitable image on hand ready to go). From there, your icons will show in your dashboard screen and have their own link (which will be based on the image name). There are some more details and intricacies to know, and I'll detail those and some features in this post.
Details, features, intricacies, and nuances:
It would be irresponsible of me to not set at least a few ground rules for this new feature.
- Image upload rules:
- Must be either JPG, JPEG, PNG, GIF, or WEBP format
- Must be under 100kb in size (use Squoosh to compress if you need to)
- Must be smaller than 512x512px in dimensions (Squoosh can also resize while compressing)
- Must not be anything illegal, offensive, pornographic, or otherwise 'unsavoury'. Images will be checked regularly.
- As above for naming of files
- Account features:
- Upload up to 4 custom icons (for now, potential to increase in the future)
- Views on icons counted - share them for more views!
- Views of icons totaled and displayed in your profile
- Delete icons at any time (view counts will also be removed)
- Option to disable ads while logged in (more info below)
This feature should exist on every website
I hate ads.. And honestly, at times I'm embarrassed to see how many ads are shown on this site. It can make it a pain to use and they're so fucking ugly. What's worse is I get very little control over where they show, so ast times they mess with the layout. The reality of the situation is that I've spent countless hours building this site, and I don't get paid for that time except for from those ads. For the most part, I'm fine with that; I didn't build this site for monetary gain and this will not be my retirement (sadly). I enjoy working on the site and will continue to do so regardless of money, but it's nice to get a little something out of it from the ads revenue, albeit peanuts.
Enough of the sob story
I'm now giving my bookmark separator people the option to remove ads if they'd like to. There are no hoops to jump through, it's as easy as making an account, going to the 'Options' menu in your dashboard, and turning the ads off. Once you've done that, every time you log in, you'll no longer see the ugly ads. I'll be honest, I might look at other options to monetise the site in the future; options that would mean I can get rid of the ads altogether. Until then, I'm happy with this solution, and it gives you and I a decent meet-in-the-middle solution, where ads still display to most, but for those who dislike them as much as I do, they can be removed easily.
Some minor updates
In a few of these posts that I've written, I've mentioned how I use a feedback widget to get ideas and thoughts from people who use the site - it's been so valuable and given me loads of great ideas. My to-do list is ridiculous. Anyway, one of the suggestions I got was basically a mini UX audit (whoever you are, thank you for that!). In their feedback, they noted how the site could potentially be made easier to use by making the homepage an immediately usable icon - great idea. You'll see that now on the homepage is the 'brand' icon with some basic instructions of what to do with it. I'm hoping this will make it easier for those who maybe misunderstood at first.
I spent some time making things look a little nicer - rounded corners on more elements, better spacing in certain areas, better responsiveness in the menu so it doesn't overlap or wrap lines for certain screen sizes. I also updated the mobile menu, which, as it turns out, was out of date and didn't have all the links - whoops. I doubt it was causing too many issues, since the site isn't really designed for mobile devices, but still worth fixing. I had actually been using two different menus - one for the 'main' areas of the site and one for the blog/posts area. I figured out a better way of implementing it so that I only need one now, which makes maintaining it so much easier, and means there will hopefully be fewer menu issues (because yes, this wasn't the first). I also added a little 'easter egg' for when you hit an invalid icon page. There's something satisfying about turning a bug into a feature.
Like I said before, my to-do list is pretty long atm. One of the first things I want to do is update the way the posts are displayed on the main posts page. In hindsight, a grid layout was a bad idea, as you can't read the titles if they're more than a couple of words long, which most are. Along with that, I'll add featured images to the posts to make them a bit less 'wall-of-text'. I'm in the process of working on a contact form - that's been a long time coming and I first mentioned it about 2 years ago. Once we start to get a decent number of custom icons being made, I want to create a page or section of the site that will showcase the icons people are making. With that, I might also create profile pages, allow people to change the names/links of the icons, set icons as public/private, and a few other ideas in that space.
That's all for now - catch ya.