Letters from Somnolescent January 31, 2021

1/31 – Fuck You, It’s January!

by bulb

That’s right, Jay. It’s the most magical time of the year here at Somnolescent. Just look at all the sequels, reboots, and remakes on offer this month! It most definitely has not been us sitting around and playing video games. Why, have a look at:

Districts 2

This one’s already a bit out-of-date, but it’s a good proof of concept. After we all sat around, playing with a “find tiny interesting sites” randomizer and finding zero tiny interesting sites, I decided to build the Seamount Navigator, basically a bunch of links to a variety of small sites out in the aether that you’ve never heard of. Real “fuck the algorithm” hours.

Cammy's Seamount Navigator
Ah, those searing colors. Classic.

Like I said, it’s already kind of outdated since we’d like to spin it off into a proper subdomain (we already have #seamounts in Somnolescent’s Discord ready to go!), but it’s not like the links don’t work anymore or anything. Have a peek if you haven’t seen it.

Old Sites 2

Somnolescent is not averse to following trends, only these days, the trends come from within. Like how I started the Scratchpad after dcb asked for a blog of his own, dcb came up with a basic HTML site and the group followed.

dcb wrote a blog post about “digital gardens” back in early December, and I remember finding the idea of it super appealing. You build enough sites, and the usual “layout and navigation” thing tends to feel a bit limiting. Plus, I’ve been wanting to build a little bit outside of the AutoSite box, as lovely as it’s been to use. Enter Lince’s Links and Cammy’s Badger Den.

Lince's Links
You know, that background looks familiar. Me saying that sounds familiar too. Hmm.

His site’s pretty strong in the “digital garden” mold, so lots of links, lots of stray thoughts–bit more of an adventure to it than his normal site. (Alas, he’s been busy with school. Eager for more updates though, lad.) Meanwhile, mine’s still being built, and I’m focusing more on full pages for my hobbies and fixations and experimenting with how exactly I build pages. Some of it’s new and some of it’s being moved from mari.somnol, which is now exclusively for my public work as a “portfolio” of sorts.

My MIDI page, as built in Retrozilla Composer
I actually built this page in Retrozilla Composer, and it was the first time I didn’t immediately hate what came out of a WYSIWYG editor. Pretty fun, actually! I’ll be using it for the rest of the site too, methinks.

I hear Devon’s got something similar in the pipeline too. Curious what her spin on this old-school trend will be.

New Sites 2, but the only difference is the URL

Like Caby moved domains back in November, borb has finally moved off carrot.somnolescent.net (which now similarly serves as a redirect) onto borb.somnolescent.net, which makes sense because that’s what everyone actually calls her.

Despite this, there is zero new content to see, unless you count a list of her brother’s books as content. (Not a bad collection though. Yours truly might be getting a few of them, even.) Here’s hoping 2021 brings us a more colorful borb site, and in fairness to her, she has been talking about such. (Did I mention we’re all a bit slow lately?)

Oh, and Caby redesigned her site and it looks really nice

Caby’s been playing a whole lot of Elder Scrolls lately, so with the fantasy itch comes a fantasy-themed site redesign! This one’s of the classic “fitting a table together with parts of an image” type, and I might be biased, but I love it a lot. Even without the MS Paint crunch (if you want to dirty up a GIF, use Paint), there’s just comfy texture to burn. And it works in Retrozilla!

Caby's crunchy, fantasy-themed new site design

There’s actually a lot rewritten and some new graphics here (one of which is in the art section of this recap in its uncrunched form–take a guess which one we picked), and as you can see from the changelog, whispers of some subsite goodness on the way! And–if nothing else, you can see the recently-unearthed more complete version of mawiteaux… >w>

Blog highlights

Only two posts on the blog this month–don’t call it a dry spell; some months don’t have any blog posts!

Art highlights

Of course, we can’t forget about the art! All the… (What got drawn this month?)

"Jetfish" by borb
“Jetfish” by borb (January 4)
"placeholder name" by Devon
“placeholder name” by Devon (January 24)
"Adventurer Boy" by Caby
“Adventurer Boy” by Caby (January 29) (<3 <3 <3)

The death of HTTPS

Yes, there is one actual bit of important news I’ll be elaborating on in a blog post in a few days, and that’s major changes to how our sites load and where you’ll be able to find them. If any of your links break, hopefully, this keeps you from wondering why. (And then hopefully, you fix your fucking links.)

Two habitual drunk men sit on a trashed set with garbage bags hanging on the walls
Hey, Jay…do you feel a little…lightheaded right now? Almost like…I’m not really Mike at all, and it’s just the oxygen in this house slowly dwindling…?

About bulb

Group posts, recaps, and things we all contributed to. Hopefully, our hum-to-English translation is intelligible enough.

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