Richard Kovacs

StormScribe Devlog – Ep 0. Why you should have a devlog

Richard Kovacs
Richard Kovacs
5 min read

I have been working on StormScribe for a while now, but I never really documented my progress. I occasionally wrote some tweets about new features, but that was it. It didn't take off, and I didn't enjoy it either. I felt like I was just spamming my followers with posts about a project they were not really interested in.

I want to provide value to people, and although StormScribe is not open source, I found the best way to do that is to write about my experiences and lessons learned while working on it. This way, you can sneak peek into the development process of a real-world project, read about the challenges I faced, hear the reasoning behind my decisions, and learn from my mistakes.

If you are interested in any of these, this devlog is for you.

What is a devlog?

A devlog is a journal of the development process of a project you are building. It does not matter if it is a game, a website, or a mobile app. You can build anything. But most importantly, you should have fun while doing it.

Benefits of running a devlog

If you choose to start a devlog, you unlock countless benefits. Let's see some of them.

Keep track of your progress

Hopefully, you already use a version control system in your projects, like Git. If not, this is your friendly reminder to start using it as soon as possible. You will thank me later.

But a devlog is more than that. I could share the titles of my commits, but I don't think that is the content you are looking for. A devlog is on a higher level and contains more information about your project's journey in an enjoyable way.

Remember why you made certain decisions

Sometimes, the commits are not enough to understand why you choose a particular solution for a problem. It contains the changes, and you can also see the old code that it replaces, but it will usually not tell you why you made that change.

A devlog is a great place to write about your thought process, list the pros and cons of your options, and derive conclusions from them. You can return to it later and check why you made that decision.

Remember what you learned

As a developer, you choose the path of lifelong learning. You simply cannot exist in this industry for long without constantly learning new things. But it is easy to forget what you learned a few months ago, especially if you have multiple projects and you are regularly jumping between them.

A devlog will help you keep track of everything you learned while developing your project. As an extra benefit, you can see how far you have come since you started. We often underestimate how much we can learn in a year. A devlog will help you realize that.

Share your knowledge with others

If you are reading this, you are probably also a fan of learning new things. By sharing your progress with the community, you can help others behind you on the same path. You can save them from making the same mistakes you did and spare them their valuable time and energy. They will be grateful for that. Trust me.

As you progress and get better at what you do with every post, your audience will grow since more and more people will find your content helpful. Also, if you have any experience in teaching, you know that there isn't a better way to test your knowledge than trying to explain it to others in a simple way.

Get feedback from others

Whether you want it or not, you will definitely receive feedback from your readers. But consider this as a good thing. You can learn a lot from others. When you work on something, it is easy to develop tunnel vision. You are so focused on your project that you cannot see the bigger picture.

If you accept feedback from others, you can easily view brand-new perspectives. Who knows, maybe they will help you solve a problem you have been struggling with for ages.

Develop a habit of writing

Last but not least, writing is always a valuable skill to have. Not everyone is a natural writer by default, but as with everything else, you can get better at it with practice.

And what is a better way to practice than writing about something you are passionate about?

What is StormScribe?

StormScribe is my largest project currently. It is a social media scheduler supporting multiple platforms, including Twitter, LinkedIn, and Mastodon.

But more importantly, StormScribe is the project with which I started to learn Next.js, and it shows. I made countless mistakes and learned a lot from them. It still has a long way to go. I have lots of bugs to fix and features to implement.

Although, this also means I will have infinite content to write about.

What will this devlog be about?

With that being said, this devlog will track every development step of StormScribe from now on. You will get a sneak peek into the tech stack I use, the reasoning behind my choices, the challenges I face, and the lessons I learn while working on it.

I hope you will gain value from it, and I can spare some time for you by front-running the mistakes you would have made otherwise.

Let's get started!