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Show HN: MyDeskTour – Show off your desk setup (mydesktour.com)
68 points by jonathancai 11 months ago | hide | past | favorite | 51 comments

I just realized that this got reposted, so just getting to these comments.

I guess its clear this implementation is quite garbage and doesn't scale - I'm using Apollo GraphQL and polling for updates which is probably overloading the backend. Seems like the pages/content will not even load for many of y'all. Issues might also be from my Google Cloud Platform setup.. Will investigate tonight.

Really sorry to have wasted some of your time :(

Thanks to all giving feedback anyways!

UPDATE: Now thinking my MongoDB Atlas cluster was the problem. Did not expect many (or any) visits/requests, so I was still at the free tier which only allowed 500 connections at a time. Just upgraded so I'm hoping this solves some problems..

Congrats on the Hacker News hug of death. Wishing you the best of luck on this project and hope you are able to repost it after putting it behind a caching layer or two.

Haha hug of death sounds about right. Thanks!

Congrats on your launch, just tweak it and repost.

Thanks for sharing it.

On that thought - is it okay to eventually repost? I think I've read a bit on hn rules about posting new versions of projects but I'm not quite sure

I'm watching this thread now. I posted a little project here on HN a few months back, didn't get a blip, but I've updated it since then.

Didn't think about re-posting.

Why do you need 500 connections? My back-end uses 1 for all incoming requests.

I created Office Snapshots 13 years ago and naturally like these sorts of sites.

One of the hardest parts will be getting content over the long term. 99% of ours is submitted at this point, but it took years of emailing people to get enough new stuff coming in on it’s own. At this point we publish ~15-20 projects per week.

If you could get people to give a quick synopsis aBout why they selected 2-3 items on their desk it would probably help people know why they might want to buy as why as SEO.

Good idea and will keep an eye out for you in the future!

Wow Office Snapshots looks incredible. Yeah UGC seems to be the big bottleneck initially, as I'm finding out right now.

Do you mind sharing why you initially started Office Snapshots?

I ask because I suspect there was something far significant than "I thought it would be cool." This project is showing me how important it is to really love what you do - otherwise the amount of effort it takes to get something off the ground and self-sustainable is just truly back-breaking. I've probably spent a month on this project and I'm already getting exhausted. Starting to think its mainly because I just don't care enough about desks and desk setups in the first place.

It was definitely an “I think that would be cool” type of thing.

Office design wasn’t my passion by any means, and I don’t think it is now in the specific sense, but I do have a passion for curating and organizing the largest selection of office design imagery and information.

13 years! That's pretty incredible longevity! It looks like it's grown into something of an architecture meets interior design magazine, from what started as a peek into lavish startup dig(g)s.

Cheers, man. Amazing work!

I was just thinking about you the other day!

Thanks for posting OS to twitter back then because if you hadn’t I probably would not have kept it up. But seeing how viral it went showed how much general interest there was. Took a while to find the right audience though I’m the architecture and design community. Funny how you had the most followers back then!

Was it the anniversary of this tweet?

Aug 7, 2007: My buddy Steve Searer is keeping things rolling over at http://officesnapshots.com/ He is already up to 26 companies!

I think if you had stuck with only "Web 2.0 Startups" your initial audience's interest would have fizzled out eventually. It's brilliant you were able to pivot to an audience with a more professional interest, an endless stream of content, and better advertising opportunities.


I think from that tweet it ended up on Digg and then passed around a bunch of blogs.

The move to other content was a mostly due to submissions being more widely varied which seemed to indicate broader interest. Once architects started submitting that seemed like the best option and we’ve been doing that angle for maybe 8 years.

Longer explanation: I originally came up with the idea when I was looking for a new mouse for my WFH setup. There are hundreds of product review sites, but nothing like seeing what other people use. I know there are many popular subreddits like r/battlestations or r/workspaces, and even sites like deskhunt.com, mysetup.co, yourstack.com and kit.co, but I thought it be nice to have a dedicated site for this kind of thing. Not really sure what the differentiating factor is right now, but just wanted to get this prototype out there :)

OK, positive part first :)

I really like the concept and it seems you have something interesting for start to see, which is always good. Nice to see a rather clean way to comment on designs.

Could use a nice way to zoom images on site, plus a link to more details if there's some (for example, in the entry about desk found on medium).

Now for slightly less cheery part :(

Please, please change the implementation.

The page is really, really slow on a fscking 300 MBit/s connection, seems to prevent opening specific desks in new tab, and most of the time seems to have no content because some JS code haven't finished whatever it is doing.

It's also non-navigable using keyboard.

Thanks so much for the detailed feedback!

The less cheery stuff is certainly hard to hear, but is what I need to hear, so I appreciate it. There is clearly something really really wrong with either the GraphQL server hosted on GCP or with how I'm fetching it from the frontend. Really need to dig into this.

What do you mean by non-navigable using keyboard?

EDIT: Just checked in DevTools, it hangs on query to the graphql server for a really long time. I mean, sure, the page is probably slashdotted right now, but it seems a bit too prevalent - and definitely doesn't have a good UX when doing so.

Maybe server-side generation with cache would help initial load?

Still a problem when I don't remove uBlock.

As for keyboard, there seems to be some unclear to me focus grab which meant that I couldn't even attempt to scroll the page using arrow keys. Mind you, it's not just your site that does it, usually it's related to someone being a bit too fancy with autofocus on a searchbox. Not sure how to help there, web frontend is not exactly my forte :)

I think the problem was actually my free tier MongoDB Atlas cluster which only allowed 500 connections at a time lol. Just upgraded it and I'm hoping it helps these damn GraphQL queries

The site really needs a loading indicator. I went to https://mydesktour.com/explore, saw it was blank, and thought it was because it was a brand new site with no UGC.

They are fetching some data from a GraphQL server that takes several seconds to download.

Unfortunately, the server appears to have a write timeout of 60 seconds so it fails after one minute.

Here is an example of what is happening → https://i.imgur.com/BMsfLht.png

  POST /graphql HTTP/1.0
  Host: api-dot-yourdesk.wl.r.appspot.com
  Accept: */*
  Content-Type: application/json
  Origin: https://mydesktour.com
  Referer: https://mydesktour.com/explore
  User-Agent: Mozilla/5.0 (Macintosh; Intel Mac OS X 10_15_6) Safari/605.1.15

    "operationName": "DesksByUser",
    "variables": {
      "filter": {}
    "query": "query DesksByUser($filter: FilterFindManyDeskInput!) {\n  deskMany(filter: $filter) {\n    _id\n    date_created\n    img\n    about\n    name\n    hashtags\n    approved\n    likes\n    comments {\n      userId\n      __typename\n    }\n    user {\n      user_id\n      picture\n      name\n      __typename\n    }\n    desk_products {\n      pros\n      cons\n      coordX\n      coordY\n      product {\n        title\n        _id\n        image\n        prices {\n          raw\n          currency\n          value\n          __typename\n        }\n        __typename\n      }\n      __typename\n    }\n    __typename\n  }\n}\n"

Tysm for even looking into this! I really need to investigate the root problems :(

Yeah, this is becoming very apparent to me also. Thanks for the feedback

Not loading for me at all too. All I see is a blank page, even after 5 minutes:


Sorry for wasting your time :( Not sure what else to say

No worries man. You live you learn. Would definitely be checking it again in a few days. Cool concept!

I noticed there's no newsletter. Showing the desktop setting of the day would be a quick low friction email I would enjoy getting in my inbox.

Ah that’s a good idea! If I have time I’ll try to set that up

The images didn’t load until I disabled my PiHole. Seems it’s relying on GTM to load images. Just FYI

Yeah broken for me too (pihole here). I'm guessing even if I turn off pihole, google tag manager is going to get blocked by one of my adblocker extensions also.

Lesson here: Write your JS so it doesn't break completely when things like Google Analytics or Tag manager don't load/are blocked.

Hm... If it's the desk images, they're being hosted on Cloudinary? Otherwise, I didn't know that GTM could block that content from loading

I usually just pop into r/battlestations when I feel like investigating new desk setups. Be forewarned: it’s real easy to spend many a casual hour in there.

For sure - was never into reddit but the community there is crazy

Pro tip: do it on an iPad and just scroll through the pictures. Less distraction, more visuals.

I see a bunch of emails posted publicly in peoples submissions, not sure if that's intentional or accidental but if possible, should be removed. :)

Ah good point. Just pushed a fix Thanks for the feedback

Seems to be up now (11/8 4:40 AM GMT). I am able to see the setups under /explore and the charts although charts take up ~1s to load.

Yep! The free tier Mongo cluster was the problem. Thanks for the feedback :)

Nothing showing on iOS.

Apologies, but thanks for the feedback

I got one question (site looks good btw), which awesome white-speakers-on-wood is in the last pic ?

Thanks, and I wish I knew haha I was searching for it myself

Explore link leads to an empty page.

Stats link leads to a page with partially initialized tables with no data in them.

Apologies, but thank you for the feedback

I love this annotating idea on pictures. Solid work, and great presentation!


I really like the idea of your website, the execution isn’t working... don’t u love the web!

Hopefully u are collecting emails, so I can come back.

Regardless of execution, it’s a good idea so keep fighting!

Tysm! Definitely learned a lot of hard lessons building this and failing in public. Certainly will be a fight, but thanks again for the feedback

Hey everyone! Built a site for people to share their desk setups and optimize their WFH experience. Posts, feedback, or bug reports are greatly appreciated!

I just see a blank white page.

Apologies :( but thanks for the feedback

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