Scott Blissett — Designer/Developer

Senior designer with a web development background, based in Sydney, Australia. Currently working with Pollen ↗ designing premium digital brand experiences and archiving the good internet on the side.

Recycling IKEA furniture for an arcarde table

After the release of the mini NES and SNES i looked into the RetroPie OS for Raspberry Pi. A visit to ebay and a few more to Bunnings later i built a two-player top down Arcade Table.

The bits:

  • IKEA second hand tabletop
  • Bunnings this and that
  • Recycled LCD monitor
  • Raspberry Pi 3
  • 3D printed screen mounts and Pi case
  • RetroPie OS

Scraping the internet for relevant domains

Relevant Domains scrapes the last year or so of Urban Dictionary words and definitions, turns them into dot coms, checks those against the Domainr API for availability and churns out a static website to flick through them all.

Relevant Bot (thanks to Chloe for the idea) sits alongside Relevant Domains. Every day it selects a random available Relevant Domain, find someone on Twitter who has used that relevant jargon recently, and @'s them the URL of the associated Relevant Domain. Goal is to give the site more exposure and hopefully they click through to purchase on Namecheap.

The bits:

  • X-Ray
  • Domainr API
  • Metalsmith
  • Airtable
  • Netlify
  • Ziet Now

Rewriting this website's codebase

This website, like many other designer's/developer's website, is a test bed for ideas and experimentation. It has been plaintext, HTML and CSS only, Wordpress, DatoCMS backend, Airtable backend, Middleman built in the past which have all had their pros and cons.

Now the setup is one which I have been using for some time on my own and client projects. It's simple, low cost, maintainable and fast.

Let's go back to front:

  • Netlify CMS is the CMS. It is open source, git-based and has just enough features to build the majority of sites I need.
  • Gridsome is the Vue version of Gatsby, an open source framework to build static websites/apps.
  • Styling is always manual no frameworks or themes. JS is plain old javascript.
  • All the hosting, CDN, DNS etc is on Netlify which I squeeze every last feature out of their free tier. The CMS is in the repo on Github.

Using this setup I can build and host this site, and most of my client websites for $0 ongoing costs (excluding the domain name).

Over-engineering a toilet door

At a previous workplace we had one downstairs toilet. I noticed that staff would often walk to the toilet only to be disappointed that it was occupied.

To fix this i grabbed our dusty Rasbperry Pi, a lot of blutack and a reed switch to update a number stored in Firebase indicating the occupancy of the toilet. Staff could then visit a website or use the /peesee command within slack to check whether they were good to go.

The bits:

Archiving the good internet

I'm constantly looking at multiple sites for references, I was collecting them using an old Mac App called Ember. It's great at what it did but was no longer under development.

Good Internet Online started as a place to upload the 1500 screenshots i had taken of websites over the years, but i decided to keep it a bit more niche.

A cron job scrapes Designer News Site Design category everyday, if a new one is found it takes screenshots using the headless browser PhantomJS, grabs a bit of metadata and uploads to DatoCMS. This triggers Netlify to build and deploy the site.

More recently i've become a fan of are.na

The bits:

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