Shadow Ramble – Web Development

For some reason, I love doing web development. I also hate it, because HTML and CSS make no sense, and everything you do feels like a workaround to get a desired effect.
Horizontally centering an object is done through;
margin: 0 auto;
Which means “no margins for top and bottom, but compute the margin for left and right”, instead of something that makes sense, or a standard centering function (why is that not a thing?). In fact, text-align: center; is sometimes also used to center elements that aren’t even text. Go figure.

I think I like it because I’ve always loved creating shit. It’s fun to get a result from something that you’ve made yourself. It’s a rewarding feeling. I’ve always loved to put together things that benefit myself or friends in one way or another, something to call my — or our — own.

Anyway, I’m not writing this to talk about why I love and hate web development, but something that saddens me, which is the fact that individual web development seems to be fading away. People no longer make their own sites. I’d honestly say that 90% of the sites I see are powered by WordPress, and in almost all of those cases, it’s also a theme provided by WordPress.

It’s both a good and bad thing. However, it’s good for all the wrong reasons.
It’s good because it usually means peoples sites will be safer. If you’re an average joe making your own site, and you serve a site that use a server side language such as PHP, you are likely to have a security loophole at some point. I’ve written this site and everything in it myself with nothing but a text editor (Atom <3) with a few security tips from a friend who's a guru at server security, especially PHP, and without him, I don't think I'd realize just how fucking crazy it is.

If your server side code is gonna have any modular values, like a query string, you better study your code before you publish it.

Today I was implementing some SEO to my site, and I was shocked to see answers on Stack Overflow with HUNDREDS of upvotes that just said to echo values in head without any security precautions. It’s instant client side code execution through the query string by simply escaping the current tag and inserting a malicious javascript.

Something tells me though that in the end, security isn’t even the reason people avoid making their own sites. I guess people just don’t find it interesting, and why should they bother when they can get something “better” in a matter of minutes?

I don’t really have any arguments though. Of course it’s always more fun to see when someone has written something from scratch, and seeing a completely custom layout and design and not yet another standard boring WordPress theme.

If you’ve been thinking of making your own site, I’d urge you to make one yourself. It’s a lot of fun once you get the hang of it. Just be careful when it comes to server side languages..

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