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Burning money on paid ads for a dev tool – what we've learned
2 projects | news.ycombinator.com | 29 Sep 2023
Have spent six figures yearly on ads, mostly for reach for the developer-focused diagram library GoJS (https://gojs.net)
> Each experiment will need ~$500 and 2 weeks
I would add a zero if you want serious data. I would also double the timescale. $5,000 over 4 weeks
I second the uselessness of Google Display, it might look like conversions numbers are good but they are 100% too good to be true. As soon as you look into them you find the sources are things like "ad from HappyFunBabyTime Android app". You have to ruthlessly prune daily for months to get anything real, and even then I'm skeptical of value. For a developer tool with very strict conversion metrics!
But I disagree on Google Search:
> Good for conversion, bad for awareness.
Before we were popular it was excellent for awareness. Post popularity its much more arguable.
Purescript bindings for GoJS
3 projects | /r/purescript | 29 Jun 2023
Creating the Halogen components would be simple enough if one takes inspiration from gojs-react. The issue is that there are no PureScript bindings for the GoJS types themselves, but GoJS does provide .ts.d declarations, which means I could use purescript-read-dts, but that library's maturity/usability seems somewhat ambiguous, according to an author's post from 3 years ago.
Any Ideas How to Create a Graph Builder UI in React?
2 projects | /r/reactjs | 24 Jan 2023
used goJS in one project and konva in another
Ask HN: What is the most impactful thing you've ever built?
33 projects | news.ycombinator.com | 18 Nov 2022
I built GoJS, which is one of the most popular commercial JS diagramming libraries: https://gojs.net
I mostly made it for myself, me and my wife use it all the time. I am slowly editing down the thesaurus to managable size.
I built a 12x16 "Goose Palace" barn out of local pine timbers, which taught me timber framing, and taught my tiny baby who turned 2 years old while doing it that this is just the kind of thing that people normally do, build barns in their driveway. Some context: https://simonsarris.substack.com/p/the-goose-palace
Some photos of building it with the baby: https://twitter.com/simonsarris/status/1584169368203956225
I designed my house, and have been writing extensively about that. Maybe this is the most impactful, since photos of it are all over Pinterest and other sites, now. The first post on that: https://simonsarris.substack.com/p/designing-a-new-old-home-...
I am not sure what is most impactful. Maybe ultimately it is building my family.
10 projects | news.ycombinator.com | 17 Nov 2022
I made a pull request for GoJS (https://gojs.net)
I have been building this canvas-based graphing library since 2011, and it contains a good number of features around customization and interactivity that are not found in other libraries. It is commercial for non-academic use however.
TypeScript is terrible for library developers
16 projects | news.ycombinator.com | 23 Aug 2022
I am really surprised by this guy's opinion. I make GoJS (https://gojs.net/), a diagramming library written in TypeScript. The project began in 2011 and we converted it to TS in 2018. It's been a huge plus. The sole downside was the initial time it took during conversion, but even in doing so we caught bugs with incorrect input types, documentation mistakes, etc.
On our end, it enforces type safety better than the Google Closure Compiler. There has scarcely been a problem with type complexity that was not ultimately our fault. Just a couple minor things that TS amended later. For that matter the TS experience has only gotten better, generally.
On our users end, we can now give them a .d.ts file that's much richer and easier for us to produce to aid their autocompletion. And we can use that .d.ts file to ensure that all the methods we intended to expose/minify are getting exposed. The advantages with the .d.ts and documentation make it feel almost essential to me for library developers to consider TS.
TypeScript has only made debugging easier, much easier since it catches errors at time of typing unlike the closure compiler. The sole exception is that debugging is a bit slower since I have to transpile instead of just refreshing the browser. But I have tsc set to compile a relatively unminified version of the JS. But if the slowness gets to me, I can just edit the JS output until I solve the issue, and then carry those edits over to the TS. This has never felt like a problem, though maybe his library is significantly more complicated.
Feel free to ask me anything if you have questions about library design + TS.
Ask HN: How to quickly animate sketches and 2D diagrams?
8 projects | news.ycombinator.com | 10 Mar 2022
GoJS might work for you: https://gojs.net
Although the focus of the library is interactivity and not setting up sequences of animation, but that is possible too.
It's always been you, Canvas2D
12 projects | news.ycombinator.com | 4 Mar 2022
My livelihood has been primarily building a Canvas diagramming library since 2010 (https://gojs.net), if anyone has any questions about 2D Canvas use in the real-world I'd be happy to answer them.
roundRect is great. Though you don't need 4 arcTo in order to make a rounded rect, you can use bezier instead (we do). Their example is also 1% amusing because they set the `fillStyle` but then call `stroke` (and not `fill`). I'll have to do some performance comparisons, since that's the operative thing for my use case (and any library author).
text modifiers are very welcome. It's crazy how annoying measuring still is, especially if you want thinks to look perfectly consistent across browsers. Though the chrome dominance is making things easier in one way, I guess.
context.reset is kinda funny. Most high-performance canvas apps will never want to use it. For that matter you want to set all properties as little as possible, especially setting things like context.font, which are slow even if you're setting it to the same value. (Or it was, I haven't tested that in several years).
I'm sure most users know this by now, but generally for performance the fewer calls you make to the canvas and the context, the beter. This is even true of transforms: It's faster to make your own Matrix class, do all your own matrix translation, rotation, multiplication, etc, and then make a single call to `context.setTransform`, than it is to call the other context methods.
Ask HN: What are some tools / libraries you built yourself?
264 projects | news.ycombinator.com | 16 May 2021
I'm not the only developer but I made (and still make) GoJS, an interactive diagramming library for the web.
Most of its popularity is with large companies building their own internal tools where they need diagramming visualization capabilities (layouts, save/load, undo/redo, data binding, etc). So you won't see it too often in the wild, but under the surface it's used in every industry.
I love it, and I love HTML Canvas, which I wish was more popular.
Ask HN: What diagrams do you use in software development?
12 projects | news.ycombinator.com | 26 Apr 2021
I actually make a diagramming library for the web, called GoJS: https://gojs.net
So I make all kinds of diagrams, mostly as demonstrations. When developing an API itself, especially one where there are phases (objects must measure themselves and draw in a certain order, and not more than they need to), state machine-style and flowchart-style diagrams are awfully helpful.
A note from our sponsor - Onboard AI
getonboard.dev | 9 Dec 2023
NorthwoodsSoftware/GoJS is an open source project licensed under GNU General Public License v3.0 or later which is an OSI approved license.