Dollar: Devlog 1

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About 7 years ago at the time of writing (January 2023), I started a little side project while I was in college that I called Dollar. It was meant to be a financial tracking web application (very original, I know!) that I could hopefully use to get a better understanding of how much money I was spending and how I could hopefully become better at budgeting that money as well.

I had kept up development of the application and had something that I was actually pretty proud of also! Unfortunately over the years I wasn't able to keep up development and use of it, and it fell into disrepair.

The original version was built using synchronous XHR, jQuery, and some hand crafted HTML! I had attempted an incremental rewrite into React around 2017 at some point, but by then the codebase was such a mess that I gave up on the effort.

I've tried several other rewrites of the same application (with different designs) since then, but haven't really had the energy to ship any of them and make them part of my daily workflow.

This afternoon however, I was sitting on the couch and looking for some motivation to get back into some coding, so I figured I'd dive back in on rewriting Dollar. I found an iteration from last year or maybe even 2021 that was looking pretty good so I figure I'll use this as a baseline and work from there.

A quick recap of the current codebase:

  • Using Next.js (using version 10!)
  • Using Supabase to manage the database (the original application used either Fieldbook [now shut down], and then maybe Airtable I think)
  • Using my component library DS Pack (a really outdated version)

I'm going to start with updating the codebase to some more recent package versions and seeing how it works out, hopefully it's possible to do so without breaking everything 😂.

I'll also aim to use this blog post as sort of a running log of my notes and work at least for today, and who know's maybe tomorrow I'll have a second Devlog for this work!

An interesting edge case that I haven't accounted for yet within my component library is a selection UI (e.g. a Dropdown or <select> element). I got around this with the previous iteration of the application by using selectable chips which I've since stopped supporting within my library. Hmm, will need to think about the right way to support this feature.

Another interesting hiccup that I'll need to look into is how I want to integrate Vanilla Extract into the application. The VE Next.js plugin at the time of writing is still not supported with React Server Components in Next.js 13 sadly. I worked around this with a really rough process of having two build flows setup for my personal site and another site as well, maybe I opt for that in this case again as well.

I ended up taking a longer break than I expected and wasn't able to get back to the project on Sunday, however I had a few ideas over the rest of the weekend that I would like to explore eventually.