Potluck - WordPress × 3rd-Party Cloud Services × Backend Hosting × Drupal × Getting Clients × GPS vs BEM × More!


It’s another Potluck! In this episode, Scott and Wes answer your questions about WordPress, Drupal, using SSGs, finding clients when you’re just starting out, scoped CSS, and more!

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Show Notes

01:48 - Most small businesses I know have heard of WordPress and it seems like it’s the industry standard for brochure sites. I’m tired of 1-5 page freelance WordPress sites. I love front-end coding and design. Do I need to “sell” people on static sites or are there freelance jobs out there for Vue/React/whatever static sites for developers? I want to stick with small businesses and a few other niches, but I’m tired of drag-and-drop builders in WordPress. Plus, I feel WordPress is overkill for a majority of sites. I just want to code sites and freelance.

08:53 - I wanted to get your opinion on 3rd-party cloud services that provide some application functionality. Things like auth0, Algolia, open cart etc. I work for a large enterprise where there is a real fear of trusting these companies with our data and so everything is built from the ground up, with less time, and we miss out on some of the sweet features these services provide. Do you use many services like this in your production apps and how would you decide which to use?

16:03 - I recently took Wes’ Advanced React course and went on to build my first custom React app! Thanks Wes! When the time came to deploy the app, I was surprised by the asymmetry in hosting options for the front vs. backend. It seems that there are 1000 slick, free-teir options for hosting my front-end. But finding a host for my Keystone backend: barf. I messed around with Heroku but troubleshooting was a nightmare, and I eventually settled on a Digital Ocean droplet. My inner system admin is secretly happy to have another OS instance to manage, but I hate paying 5 dollars a month to host a silly project that will probably never be seen by anyone, and I’m already irritated with the amount of care and feeding the backend needs. What gives? Why are there so many choices for frontend hosts and so few for the backend? Are there hosted backends that have auth, database, image hosting, etc and take care of the nitty-gritty with a newbie-friendly free-tier? Maybe I should I be looking into serverless?

23:21 - Since Drupal has evolved beyond awkward kloog of v7 entity/ctools/json-services/phptemplate erc into v9 with excellent graphql/json/rest support and tomb(?) for non drupal web would you recommend Drupal as for a blogger/businesses’ internal network doc/publishing/communications system (ie Drupal not as website itself)?

29:43 - I have just started my web development freelancing business and I feel like I am having a hard time getting a lot of response from small business who currently don’t even have a website (or have a terrible one). Is there any advice you can give about talking people into hiring a web developer when they CLEARLY need help? I plan to use NextJS and Sanity for all of my sites. My first client project is already built using it and it was a great developer experience!

34:30 - What would you guys consider the best alternative to the BEM naming convention? I personally follow a method with very few classes (I’ve seen this called GPS) which takes advantage of the CSS cascade, but I do think it may suffer from readability problems if I handed my stuff to another developer to work on. Interested to hear your thoughts.

39:16 - I have been self teaching myself web development for a little over a year now and your show has been a big help! I am getting to the point now where I feel I am nearly qualified for jobs and will be starting the application journey soon. I currently work in supply chain management at a big corporation with a background in industrial engineering (of which I hold a Bachelors degree). My question for you is - seeing that I have work experience at a big company and a STEM background, do you think this holds any weight in terms of being qualified for a dev job? What I am mainly wondering is how much I should leverage this during interviews and on my resume.

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