If You Start Playing...


I discovered early December 2018 that there existed .christmas and .holiday TLDs. Naturally, I had to purchase one, so I sprung for the non-denominational (and, more importantly, cheaper) naitian.holiday domain.

The next question, of course, was what I should do with it. I ended up using it for two projects, so I definitely got my money's worth. One of the projects was if you start playing.

if you start playing...

Inspired by this meme format, I decided to make a New Year's countdown that would automatically start playing these videos at the correct time.

Here are the specs for the project:


  1. client side: it really doesn't need a backend, and I wanted to host on S3, serve through CloudFront, etc.
  2. customizable: I want to be able to share links to custom videos / timestamps.
  3. dark theme: for the nighttime countdown, of course.


Building out the application was actually pretty straightforward, thanks to the Youtube iframe API.

To make it customizable and all on the client side, I used window.location to get URL parameters.

let url = new URL(window.location.href);
if (url.searchParams.get('custom')) {
   const id = url.searchParams.get('id');
   const timestamp = url.searchParams.get('timestamp');
   vid = {
} else {
    // Get from list of presets

You can check it out at naitian.holiday/iysp/?preset=umich.

The Github Repo.