Big Chunky Rides Again

Tesserae has gotten quite the second wind since I figured out all my layout troubles not too long ago. It’s been a slower end to the year and I’m shipping out to Ohio in three days, so I’ve been trying to get some real work done on it before I leave.

In that respect, it’s been pretty fantastic for the project. My focus right now is on rewriting and clarifying the existing site content, adding more examples, more graphics, and fleshing out things the absolute best I can. Thankfully, I left Tesserae 1.0 in a satisfactory state where the pages that were on it were the ones I felt absolutely necessary to launch such a site. Thus, I’m laser-focused on refining the material and ensuring accuracy the best I can.

Tesserae's page on headings as of December 12, 2019
Tesserae’s page on headings as of writing this

The cardinal sin I made with Tesserae 1.0 is assuming any knowledge whatsoever on the part of the reader. When I was on Neocities, the atrocities I bore witness to made me a little arrogant, I think. I swear to God, someone had three doctypes on one of their pages. Three! As a result, I decided I wasn’t gonna pander to people who couldn’t get their heads around the most basic of concepts, mmmmhmmmmmm.

And then mon and borb happened. Not exactly dum-dums, but they stumbled pretty badly with Tesserae 1.0, and I kept needing to explain and clarify my own writing to them. It’s one of those storybook moments of arrogance, where things I thought were simple weren’t quite as simple as expected.

Thing is, this stuff also went uncaught by dcb and Caby because they already knew the material. I had a total blind spot here, with no way of knowing how coherent my technical writing was to those I’d intended it for. There was definitely something good there, but it needed work. In fact, a lot of work.

Tesserae's page on emphasis tags as of writing this
Tesserae’s page on emphasis tags as of writing this

In June, I went through everything I’d written, scribbled in the margins, and threw it all up onto the Trello for my later use. Those crib notes are coming in handy right now: pages are getting rewritten, topics are getting split up into separate pages, and the pacing of what’s honestly the most crucial section of the site (the basic HTML tutorials) is now infinitely better. There’s now an entire introductory section explaining web browsers, testing in different ones, the different file formats, text editors and picking a good one, and how best to read the site. I’m not even sure I’m done splitting it up, I might end up with a page explaining HTML attributes before long.

Tesserae's basic HTML section as of writing this
Tesserae’s basic HTML section as of writing this

I can’t promise a due date or anything, but I’ve been busy. I’m getting every single page checked by everyone who’s active in Somnolescent, and I might even reach out to someone outside the group before showtime just to make sure it’s all kosher.

I got a good feeling about Tesserae 2.0. Here’s hoping I don’t waste it.

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