Where are we going?

Long time I had it in mind. For months I worked on it, built prototypes - and rejected them again. But what do I want?

Published on 11/15/2015, updated on 03/17/2019

The project "own website" is already a real mammoth project of mine.

Today she has nothing in common with the project, which started in 2006 as "PMedia Meetpoint". At that time, I still had the intention to offer a service that would aggregate the content of as many - especially social - pages as possible, because I was very disturbed by the daily routine of checking out pages like Facebook, MySpace & co. But after some time later I noticed that "PMedia" - my nickname for years - was apparently used by a Polish porn/erotic distributor and that "Meetpoint" does not reveal a brilliant level of creation but rather a lack of English knowledge, a new name had to be found. Since I also followed the career of BeOS at that time, which was distributed as ZETA among others, I was motivated to claim a Greek letter for myself as well. Since I liked the majuscule optically very much, the choice fell on the Xi - and thus also the logo explains itself, which accompanied from now on all my projects. The "intersection" stems from the uninspired attempt to somehow cast the "Meetpoint" into a meaningful word. This name has survived to this day.

The importance of the site changed in 2010, when I successfully completed my Abitur and - not least because of the work on the xi-intersection - started to work for one of the services I wanted to aggregate shortly before, especially since the market started to shrink at that time. From then on I buried the original project and rededicated the site as the central hub of my work, the central intersection of all my "products".

At the beginning of 2011 I simply picked up Fefe's blog because I not only read it regularly - until today - but was also very impressed by its simplicity and efficiency. This project failed, however, primarily because I could not communicate any noteworthy content there / could not estimate the appropriate level of "relevant" content. So in October 2011 I finally changed the orientation again, to a loose collection of HTML files and a set of more or less useful tools, which I partly executed as OpenSource. However, the maintenance proved to be very time-consuming - I want to be able to maintain content, not HTML. Finally, I returned to Wordpress in 2013, picking up on an ordinary blog style, but after the usual initial euphoria about the project, it quickly went to seed again.

This changed again at the beginning of 2016, when the site was launched with new content and already with today's objective, the dissemination of knowledge and information. This idea grew out of my Christmas vacation project 2015 - the reverse engineering of Outpost 2 and the associated difficulties in finding information - a circumstance I wanted to change. I also attended a number of events, including Super Geek Night and Japan Day Düsseldorf / NRW, where I was also enjoying my photos - and since I was asked about the photos, which I actually consider to be just a pastime, it was obvious to "exhibit" them on the website. And I finally wanted to use the great project UIkit in a meaningful way and counteract the glut of bootstrap-based pages. It was impractical, however, that the site was again a loose pile of HTML files, which were more or less comfortably cemented together by PHP, but I wanted - in order not to have to expect too many possible problems - to refrain from an administration interface, databases, statistics and other fuss. So again the project failed again in early 2017, after one year, because of the maintainability. I also had my doubts, because if I want to blow knowledge into the world - what do I do if I spread false information? Someone who wants to spread knowledge also has a certain responsibility.  It could also shed an unwanted light on me and my "professional competence". So the lights went out again.

Nevertheless, the desire to spread knowledge did not let go of me and so, despite all doubts, I created the new reincarnation of the site on 19 May 2018, just in time for Japan Day. Also the technology changed once again, the page consisted now of simple Markup, which was brought over a generator in HTML form. There was also a content innovation - the website was multilingual from now on.
Nevertheless, the "big" update for Japan Day 2018 was already the last update worth mentioning that saw this variant of the site - the idea to handle each element of the site as a separate entity finally exposed me to the maintenance and care of 1272 folders, which quickly became uncomfortable, even though it has its advantages and "nicely" managed without a database and thus offered as little attack surface as possible. Also, the original update concept based on GIT did not work very well and quickly led to increased time expenditure (due to the necessary re-generation of all content) and memory consumption (since in addition to the different image formats, the originals always had to be stored on the server).

So finally something had to be created that is easy to maintain, can be updated quickly, maybe even is a bit interactive. Finally, I had to admit that in over 10 years of website history, I haven't received a single non-automated email regarding my website or its content.

For this reason, I developed various concepts since May 2018, which finally took on an almost final form since November 2018 - which is why on 17.03.2019 the xi-intersection shone in a new guise, based on PHP, MySQL, Grunt, Less, jQuery and Bootstrap. The design was adapted - as I still consider the standard bootstrap design to be useful, but not representative - and is supposed to follow the MSDN and older Microsoft designs, but in green, as this is my favorite color. Basically the site is designed to be multi-theme capable. What has remained is the internationalization.

I am curious how long this incarnation of the site will accompany me. Slowly it was really time to finish this long-term project, because I am very much in the mood for further projects, which I would like to communicate here.


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