14 October 2011 | 6 comments | cheat sheets, cheatography
After several years and plenty of different versions, my new cheat sheet project has open doors. Come check out Cheatography! (There are three new cheat sheets too!)
Cheatography was born a long time ago, the spawn of the Added Bytes cheat sheets and the short-lived cheat sheet request system. It was obvious from the requested cheat sheets and number of votes for each that there was no way I could produce as many cheat sheets as were wanted and that I did not know enough about many of the topics to provide a decent reference for them.
The solution seemed obvious - build a site that allowed people to make their own cheat sheets. And so, Cheatography was born.
Building begins ... and stalls
The first few incarnations of Cheatography were an attempt to build a system that would allow anyone to create a PDF cheat sheet in the style of the others on Added Bytes. This, it turns out, is harder than you'd think. Despite the proliferation of PHP-based HTML to PDF converters, issues like line wrapping, nested tables, font kerning and distribution, page headers and file sizes stopped me from finding a way to produce PDFs that were of a high enough standard to produce and print.
Bit of a shame, that. I'm still working on it though, and hope to add high quality printable versions of cheat sheets to Cheatography in the near future (and things have been looking up recently thanks to TCPDF).
Better than PDF
But as one door closed, another opened. While I couldn't do PDFs the way I wanted to, I could now use HTML, and that meant I could include all sorts of new goodies - comments, videos, images and links just to start. It also meant cheat sheets could be properly bookmarked, were quick to download, and best of all quick to update and add to.
The down side, unfortunately, is that they don't print nicely at the moment.
And that is where Cheatography is up to now. It's a resource for cheat sheets and a platform to help you build your own.
What to look at?
There's plenty to see already on Cheatography. I'd suggest starting with the newest content though - while building the site, I had the opportunity to put a few new cheat sheets together:
- French Cheat Sheet
- Kings and Queens of the United Kingdom Cheat Sheet
- Vimeo Advanced API Methods Cheat Sheet
Most of the cheat sheets from here have also been transferred over into HTML format, and several have been improved and had some long standing bugs fixed. You can see them on my Cheatography profile. I've also linked to them from the cheat sheet pages on this site.
What if I find a mistake or bug?
The site is in beta at the moment, which means it's a bit new and there are still bits that aren't quite perfect. If you find a problem with anything relate to the site, please email firstname.lastname@example.org (or leave a comment here if you prefer). I'd also love to hear your thoughts, feedback and suggestions for how I can improve the site!
What was that site called again, Dave?
I'm glad you asked that, anthropomorphically personified website. Come check it out at Cheatography.