WarpURL Day 1!

June 2021 Retrospective

4 July 2021

I plan on building in public so this will be the first of many monthly retrospectives. This is where I reflect the current month, share plans for the next month and just discuss what’s on my mind.

WarpURL finally said Hello world this month. I only soft-launched it, sharing within my own network while finalising a few things. I am reasonably happy with WarpURL at the moment after all perfection is the enemy of good and I can’t only focus on the product for now.

I still have no clients using WarpURL but that was actually expected. This month I am going to make a drive to get a few early access clients by offering free lifetime plans at 25k or maybe even 100k link plans.

I also need to update the demo page to look more lively as there is just the single “ping” link being clicked every 10 minutes at the moment. I have pasted a screenshot of what an active user dashboard looks like below, this is for all the links I shared for WarpURL so far.

Dashboard 1 Dashboard 2

Then the stats for the links I used to share the initial announcement with:

Soft launch links

Last Month’s Profit

Project Profit Monthly Change
WarpURL -$50 0%
Consulting $200 ^100%

Nothing here yet, again, this is expected. I actually had to buy AWS developer support for the first time ever. Two days before I wanted to soft launch, AWS CodeBuild had problems in the us-east-1 region. They resolved the issues within a few hours, but they did not fix it properly although they said it was operational again.

Code Build Meme

Long story short, I gave it 12 hours, then bought support and opened a ticket. Just to have my ticket responded to on hour 23 (advertised < 24 hours reply), at around hour 12 of opening my ticket, the AWS Health Dashboard finally showed that there were issues with CodeBuild again.

That at least reassured me, overall I wasn’t too impressed with AWS support, they must have seen my ticket before 23 hours? I guess I am just ranting a bit because the late reply + the AWS CodeBuild service being unusable for > 24 hours (without them recognizing the problem) really came at the worst time ever, right before the soft launch. I could have kicked off manual builds, but the pipelines are a crucial part in how WarpURL handles tenancy. I wrote about the architecture in this blog post: Mission, logic and architecture behind WarpURL

So the AWS Support was my biggest expense for WarpURL seeing as the whole thing is Serverless 😃.

Last Month’s Goals

Goal Grade
Created WarpURL API Docs A-
Launched WarpURL A
Started the WarpURL blog A
Extended my regular blog for writing retros A
Shipped first changes to WarpURL A-

Grades: A, B, C, D, E, F, Incomplete

I created the WarpURL docs with VuePress, the reason that it got an A- is that I am not too happy with VuePress. I ended up doing so manny silly small things like getting the menu, navigation headings, ect. correct and working. I could just as well have built my own blogging/documentation system in that time fiddling around to get it to work like I wanted to.

That is exactly what I did with the WarpURL blog. Some GULP scripts, node packages to format markdown, file watchers, 2-3 cups of coffee (~4 hours) and I was done with the structure and well on my way with two blogs. This was integrated into the website itself that runs NuxtJS and Vuetify. The most difficult part was probably to get the Server Side Rendering (SSR) correct for SEO, which took way too long. I wrote 2 blogs so far:

Then I also plan on changing my Serverless Wordpress blog to the above NuxtJS & Vuetify alternative that I wrote for WarpURL. Actually I already did, this retro is on the /journal path, CloudFront sends all requests to the new bucket for the /journal path and all others still goes to the original blog.

The soft launch of WarpURL went about as expected, I got some positive feedback on LinkedIn and Twitter and a few followers as well. I also got RickRolled when someone used the WarpURL front page (linked to the demo site) to shorten a link. I saw it on the demo site and just had to click on it, well done, you got me 😄 !

I also shipped some cool new features for WarpURL, like including the campaign channel in the chips and matching the chip color to the chart legend when viewing multiple link stats. You can now also clear a link’s stats and select between IP & UA or QueryString unique click tracking.

WarpURL Update

Two minor versions, below are just a few highlights.


  • Ability to clear specific link stats.
  • Unique tracking can be switched between IP & UA or QueryString.
  • 7 New CloudFront Point of Presence (POP).
  • Delete user invite
  • Grouping Referrers on the pie charts but still allowing the “Show all” to view individually


  • The statistics page now shows each link’s name, slug and optionally channel (if available) on the Clicks chart.
  • The link chips at the top now have the same color as the Clicks chart legend.
  • Copying a link now prepends the protocol https:// by default. The protocol is not always required and can be omitted when sharing on certain platforms to reduce the length of your short URL, but the support of this feature varies per platform.


  • Bugs on the user dashboard and link dashboard

The full changelist can be seen here

This Month’s Goals

  • Get a few early access clients, extend offering of free lifetime plans at 25k or maybe even 100k link plans.
  • Create the About Us, Privacy Policy, Terms of Service for the website.
  • Start listing a Full Features list used for pricing on the website.
  • Update API Docs
  • Add an TTL (Time to live) option to links, this already kinda exists for the demo site, but it needs to be slightly improved.
  • Fix bugs as they arise.

That is the general plan, might add or remove things.

Closing thoughts

This month was really exciting. It was the first time I introduced WarpURL to the world, I have been mentioning it to a few close friends for months.

I sometimes get these moments that it feels like I am stagnating because I will be stuck on some silly problem for a long time. This happened again nearing the end of the month. Implementing SSR took way longer than I though and since I still want to meet my self-imposed deadlines. So then I rush just about everything I do, or I would cut other things to make time.

Then the side hustle isn’t fun, so once I realised that I am in another spin I decided to just slow down. The monthly AWS PTA Meetup that I host usually helps to calm and slow me down, not sure why since that also takes between 3-6 hours a month.

So this month I am focusing on having more fun, taking things a bit slower as I really pushed last month.

I prefer the office over working from home, but have been working from home for the last 2 weeks. I can feel cabin fever setting in again, have to start being more strict on boundaries. Lockdown Productivity: Spaceship You is a good video showing why setting up different spaces in your home is important especially when confined to your “spaceship”/home.

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