One Page, One Request

I have a weird obsession with my website: I want a page load to be a single HTTP request.

I’m not even sure if this is a good thing, I’m sure there are benefits to be had by parallel downloads, caching, blah blah. But who cares, it doesn’t have to make sense, it’s my website and I’ll do what I want.

BTW this doesn’t apply to pages that have images. Images are additional requests.

Inlined Favicon using an Emoji

My favicon.ico used to be a red square that was a .png file. That’s additional request. Unacceptable!

Even if your HTML doesn’t reference a favicon, browsers will still look for one at favicon.ico and if there isn’t one at there it’s a wasted HTTP request that returns 404 Not Found. Unacceptable!

The solution is to define one in the <head> of your HTML. You can inline it by base64 encoding an image, but I found that you can just use an emoji.

<link rel="icon"
      type="image/svg+xml" />

The href is just “data:image/svg+xml,” plus this URL encoded:

<svg xmlns='http://www.w3.org/2000/svg' viewBox='0 0 16 16'><text x='0' y='14'>🍩</text></svg>

It’s just a donut emoji! I don’t fully understand the viewBox and text offsets, but hey that’s what works. It doesn’t show in Safari, but at least it doesn’t make a request for favicon.ico so mission roughly accomplished. caniuse.com shows the full browser compatibility story.

Inlining CSS

I still write CSS in a separate file as part of my site theme and use a feature of Hugo to inline it when the site is generated. In my theme’s <head> Hugo template:

    {{ $css := resources.Get "/css/pdp.css" | minify }}
    {{ $css.Content | safeCSS }}
    {{ $css := resources.Get "/css/code.css" | minify }}
    {{ $css.Content | safeCSS }}

Easy! Convenient! I use one .css file for my site styling and one for code block styling. If I really wanted to go nuts, I could not include the code CSS unless there was code on the page.

No trackers

No Google Analytics or anything like that. I try to block all those things, so why would I put them on my own site? No one reads this site anyway, or maybe I’m massively popular. The world will never know!

Output Page Size

How large is the download for the home page of this site? We can use curl to get the download size.

❯ curl https://pdp.dev -w '%{size_download}' -so /dev/null

37kb. Not bad! Most browsers use Accept-Encoding: gzip or equivalent to request compressed resources. How large is the download with compression?

curl --compressed https://pdp.dev -w '%{size_download}' -so /dev/null

7kb. Even young me with a 28.8kb dialup connection would be happy with that.

What about the longest post I’ve written (Japan Trip 2018)? Raw: 38kb. Compressed: 14kb. Compression ratio went down considerably, probably because the home page is a list of links which is mostly HTML tags that compress better than my prose.

It’s fun doing weird stuff like this!