While in between jobs I decided to set myself some small goals to remain productive but also be able to deliver them. Usually when I begin a personal project I don’t even think how long it might take me to complete. This has lead me to take on very large projects with little to no chance of being in a usable state yet alone done. This time I took a different approach to only tackle small projects. This lead to actually accomplishing a complete rewrite of datemate and ilc, which I’ll talk about another time.

For those that don’t know what datemate is, it’s a handy web app that helps you figure out dates without having to think long or use calendars etc. If you ever find yourself asking “what is the date 7 weeks from now” or “what day of the week was April 2nd?” etc then you might find it helpful.

I rewrote datemate using Solid JS, Typescript, and Tailwind CSS. The result was an 82% reduction in code and approx 72% reduction in bundle size. This is not a heavy app to begin with but I do like to keep things to a minimal as much as possible. That is a minimum of code, a minimum set of dependencies, etc. I can’t claim that the benefits were entirely from a different implemention, much of the logic in the application did change too as well as not all of the functionality was carried across. Some of the functionality I did not believe was useful so they were left behind. If I find it useful again then I can re-add it.

Part of the reason for the rewrite was simply to gain practise to Solid JS and Typescript. Both are new technologies for me, the latter being exposed at my previous job and wanted to dabble with it. Solid JS was interesting as a kind of re-imaginated React JS but highly efficient and focus on the web. It did take a few attempts at building datemate to understand how Solid JS worked and be comfortable with it. Coming from React, it certainly is different despite looking very similar. I found the implicit dependency tracking impressive and something I did not have to think much about. There is more to learn, perhaps in my next project.

Marty Zalega

Just your friendly neighborhood developer

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