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Some Opus Updates for the New Year

2024 means a new domain and host, more privacy, and more efficient content management.

I took advantage of the past holiday break to make several updates to Opus itself. Only one of them may be really noticeable, but they all help Opus continue to evolve towards its final form — whatever that might be.

First, keen-eyed visitors will notice that Opus now lives at opus.ing instead of opuszine.us, so update your bookmarks. (Do people still use bookmarks?) I tried this once before, many years ago, with “opus.fm,” but exorbitant renewal fees put an end to that. Still, I’ve always wanted an Opus-centric domain if only because “Opus” is this website’s proper name, not “Opuszine,” and I want the domain to reflect that. (I’m still kicking myself for not registering “opus.blog” when I had the chance.)

I didn’t pick “opus.ing” in order to verb-ify “Opus,” as if it’s really possible “to Opus” anything. That said, I do spend a lot of time working on and writing for Opus, so maybe that’s what it means “to Opus.” I also like the fact that “opus.ing” sounds a bit like “opuszine,” which is a nice little nod to the site’s previous domains. (I believe that’s what marketing types call “brand synergy.”)

Second, Opus has a new host to go with the new domain. For the last several years, Opus ran on one of DigitalOcean’s bespoke droplets. While I do enjoy the nerdery of building and maintaining my own LAMP stacks, the truth is, I’m not a DevOps guy or server admin. So now Opus is hosted by the good folks at Arcustech, who can do all the worrying about server maintenance while I just focus on the site. The migration was not without its hiccups, but Arcustech’s support staff was incredibly helpful through it all. (Fun fact: Arcustech branched off from the now-defunct EngineHosting, which hosted Opus when it ran on the ExpressionEngine CMS.)

Third, Opus is now Google-free. Specifically, I removed Google Analytics at the start of the year, so now Opus is only using Tinylytics for website analytics. For more info on Tinylytics, read my review from last November, but basically I prefer it over Google Analytics because it’s privacy-focused and much simpler to use.

And finally, I’ve updated how content is managed in the admin area, and specifically, how my “Best Streaming Titles” posts are created. Those posts often contain a lot of repeated content that, until now, meant a lot of time-consuming searching, copying, and pasting. But I’m now leveraging Craft’s “Entries” field, which allows me to create a single library of streaming titles that can be mixed, matched, and customized as needed. (For you non-developers out there, this is analogous to the “single source of truth” methodology, which aims to reduce duplicate data by enforcing single, canonical sources of information.)

On a related note, I continue to be impressed by Craft’s data-modeling capabilities. Its element-based approach to content management can be intimidating at first, and can become unwieldy if you’re not careful, but it’s also nigh-infinitely flexible.

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