Joseph Hallenbeck

The concept of feature creep is pretty well understood in the tech community. But I wonder what we would call the opposite? Feature decay? Feature half-life? Feature death?

Since I started working full time in the tech industry, I have had precious little time to devout to revamping my personnal sites. This makes me sad, because I have learned so much and yet have no time to apply any of this newfound knowledge to these little side projects!

So I set out with a plan. New templates for the portfolio and the webcomic. Also, I would spin my “Photo Journal” posts off into a seperate site tied into Fotomoto and attempt to market prints off of it.

Well, right from the start things hit a rocky start. If I wanted to do a photo website, I would first need to sort through the back catelog of 10,000 photos and figure out what exactly I could feature on the site.

Two months of sorting, tagging, scoring, and fixing up photos later – I concluded that (a) I was sick of editing photos and (b) I was not a productive enough photographer to populate an entire site with quality photographs.

So scrap that idea. How about doing the new templates? I set that on my agenda and watched the weeks pass. The problem? Every night I get home and the last thing I want to do on a summer evening is sit down at the computer and do more coding.

The end result was a massive descaling of the project. Instead of all new templates, I went for fixing up some of the padding and font issues on the sites. This site went to a sans-serif font and added Google Ads to the blog page. I also updated the photography page with new photos from late 2010. My resume is now up-to-date and I scrapped the website design / development portfolio pieces because they were out of date and with how rapid my skillset changes these days, I doubt I could keep up.

The the comic site also got a big rebranding as I changed the name from “Drifting on the Sea of Nihilism” (a reference to the ongoing story I was trying to tell) to a more generic “Dreamscapes.” I archived the tale of Ivan and filtered out the filler art into a sketch blog where I plan on showcasing my current attempts at bad art. Ivan, may continue or I may spin off into working on a different story. The backend of the wordpress template is rather new. I can now create storylines that will allow pagination one comic at a time instead of having all of the entries piled into one long feed.

So there we are, very ambitious plans turned into “change some fonts and rearrange the feeds and call it good.” Ah well, at least I can check it off the list of summer projects.

"Feature Decay - Concerning Changes to the Site" by Joseph Hallenbeck is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.