About This Website

Developer's note: this page a year or two out of date. In that time I have redesigned the site homepage and dropped the sidebar, built /garden, built /sketchbook, built /wiki, implemented sidenotes into /blog, built /photoscape, and made a host of minute changes and improvements. One day I will rewrite this to be current. Ideally I'll add a changelog.

This website is my home on the internet. It's the hub of my online presence, a place for me to publish my ideas, writing, and other projects. It's my own digital castle built with pieces of my life. It's my way of saying hello world, this is me. I'm excited to see who waves back.


Willsite was originally a placeholder while I thought of a "real" name for the site. However, enter my horrible inability to name things for myself—I couldn't think of a good idea. The longer I used willsite, the more it grew on me, so here we are. I think it's fun and funky fresh! Don't worry, I won't be continuing the convention (willblog, willsletter...). Probably.

Site Design

At present the only (mildly) notable design element is the vertical sidebar navigation on desktop, which seems less common than a horizontal top navigation bar. I chose a sidebar mainly because it renders the viewport more square, which I thought might be better suited for some future experiments with digitally generated art and animation. Time will tell, it has certainly created its fair share of design hassle.

Some of the websites I took design inspiration from include Seth Godin's blog and Gwern Branwen's website

Technical Details

I built the initial version of this website in January-March 2022, and finished and released the beta in May 2022

  • Static site generated with Eleventy
  • Templating with Nunjucks
  • Version control via Gitlab
  • Hosted by Netlify
  • Blog posts are markdown files stored in an Obsidian vault inside of my project folder for easy editing

Site Beta To-Do List

Once these are complete I'll consider the site in beta: polished enough that I'm ready to actively tell people about it ("I have a website" vs "I'm working on a website").

  • [Complete] Polish aesthetics and layout (theme, colors, fonts)
  • [Compete] Build blog into the site
  • [Complete] Iterate copy on home, about, now, site, blog pages
  • [Complete] Subscribe feature to receive posts and site updates via email

Deferred Beta To-Do List

Things I wanted to build into the site beta, but punted on after realizing I was yak-shaving working on nonessential things. Will return to these after I get back on track with blogwriting.

  • Update headshot photo
  • Tweak theme colors (I'm really invested in the green, but feel like I can get to a better place as far as legibility/contrast/aesthetics go... pairing two shades of green for the sidebar has been a major headache!)
  • Staging site at staging.willbamberg.com for development
  • Functional blog sidenotes (Tuffte CSS as a starting point)
  • Replace About page picture with a photocollage (also improve the positioning...)
  • Iterate responsive design: margin collapse, navigation, screen size breakpoints, etc.
  • Build tags/categories into blog
  • Overhaul layout CSS to switch from px to em/rem
  • Add a third font into the mix for differentiating headings

Future Features

Things I'd like to build into the site. Subject to change. Items roughly in order of priority (and solidity).

  • Digital Garden (automatically scrape my Obsidian vault for public-tagged notes and build on site).
  • Expand email list from "posts in your inbox" to a more full-fledged newsletter. I currently don't intend on a per-week basis, but I'd like to do a per-post (so, monthly-ish) digest with interesting links I've found, etc. Feels like that would be a good balance of putting out cool/useful resources without committing to a weekly missive that must then, each week, be written.
  • Poetry. I write a lot of poetry, I'd like to begin publishing some of it on the site. Still mulling over the implementation, but some sort of interlinked web interests me (Poetry Garden, a la Digital Garden, if you will).
  • Digital Sketchbook.
  • Digitally generated photo collage art of some sort. Very tentative at this point, but I envision something connected to the poetry (e.g. generates a new piece of artwork per poem based on themes or something).