An Accidental Shop for

— 2 minute read

I was checking out Jason Kottke's shop page and love the accidental nature of it, which is where he got the name from: was also never supposed to be a store. But as the years piled on, so did the links to all sorts of interesting books, movies, music, and other products that people could buy. I’ve collected many of those products into The Accidental Shop. The shop contains over 2000 items from 19+ years of posts.

I asked Jason on Twitter how he was building the shop: ...and he pointed me to this post which has some nerdy tidbits about how he went about building the store after the fact with 19 years of blog posts in a database:

To build the shop’s catalog, I went through and scraped all ~25,000 posts I’ve done over the past 19 years, looking for product links to Amazon. The script found almost 2300 distinct items and put them into a database, noting the dates of the initial & most recent mentions and the # of mentions for each item.

Pure nerd grunt work plus using modern techniques like Isotope to lay it all out makes for a fun, accidental project. Back in the glory days of blogging, a store like this would've been a gold mine of affiliate profits. In 2018, I'm sure it's still fairly lucrative for a site as big as, but that's beside the point. The point, to me, is that you can do this kind of stuff when you own your content on your own site. Get yourself a blog and start now.