09/27/16 - We're Live

Tags Jekyll Neocities

The blog is now live. After some consideration, I decided GitHub isn’t a good fit for this type of blog. I occasionally write about coding or web technology, but more often I discuss personal life, writing, or media. It feels weird to have those types of posts or fiction searchable as ‘code’ through GitHub.

I attempted to use KISSr and my existing Dropbox, but apparently KISSr only hosts an index page.

Down the rabbit hole I went.

calepin is a neat journaling site powered by Pelican, a Python platform I have considered, that leverages Dropbox. It is free and allows journal posts in markdown, with a short subdomain url or a custom domain, but there is no way to customize the template. An interesting no-frills solution, but not what I need.

I was considering AWS when I stumbled across Neocities. I am not sure how I missed this silo when it launched in 2013. Neocities offers 100 MB at a subdomain.neocities.com page. Free, no ads, and a short url, with the option to add a custom domain or redirect later. I like the vibe. Considering this blog currently weighs in at about 50kb, and will likely generate 0 gigabytes of traffic, it’s worth a try. The only change this makes to my workflow is I’ll have the extra step of going into the web browser to upload the build.

I spent an inordinate amount of time tinkering with the layout and style before settling on basic and readable. I even did silly things like shaving a fraction of a kilobyte off my stylesheet (though I did discover a great tool in the process, the Node JS app css-purge).

This has been a learning experience. I’ve taken baby steps towards using Ruby and Node JS. Now I know installing a gem is no big deal, whereas before I would have blinked and hit the back button, probably. I’m definitely more comfortable with the command console now.

I like writing in kramdown. The Markdown Writer package for Atom streamlines the post creation process by allowing me to create front matter templates. It has tag and category management features I am still sorting out, but James Sturtevant’s post on configuration and workflow has been helpful.

Reorganization looks like it will be the main challenge with a static blog. For example, if I need to rename a tag I will have to use a find/replace regex to go through the post folder and change every instance of that tag. My inconsistent use of tags will probably come back to bite me.