I joined the 512KB club

Jan 13 2021

JavaScript rules the web, literally. In fact, this website is built with JavaScript (Next.js). I recently started to think about if I really needed this much overhead for a simple site like this. After all, I don't have any fancy user interaction features or complex animation that would justify the JavaScript on this page.

There is a new (no, not that new) philosophy called the lean web. It essentially tries to keep websites tiny and semantically correct. This has many benefits, ranging from less pollution generated by your site to improved SEO, since many search engines favor a semantically correct website over a site that abuses JavaScript to mimic the features, that are baked into html anyway.

In order to get lean, I decided to join the 512KB club. This website lists sites that are below 512KB in total (uncompressed, with all dependencies). To get below that mark, I had to remove my face from the frontpage (I'm sure you'll miss it😅), since the image itself was roughly 750KB. I'm now just below 500KB, which qualifies me to join the blue team.

Blue Team

I'm not planning to stop here though. I think keeping a website small and simple is an excellent practice. My next step will be to get rid of all the JS junk on this site and only rely on HTML and CSS. I still want to be able to write my posts in Markdown, so I will have to come up with a way to generate pages from them. A safe bet for this would be to use a SSG like Hugo. Frankly, writing my own simple SSG probably wouldn't hurt either. Let's see how high I can climb the ranks of the 512KB club. Care to join me?

This is post 003 of #100DaysToOffload.


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