Mindless Blather

Moving on from Posterous

16 Mar 2013

This is my first post using Jekyll as my blogging engine. With posterous shutting down, I felt like I had to find a new alternative. I don’t blog often, but I wanted a system that I felt like would last, in case the next site I chose shut down, too. That means that my system should be self-hosted, if necessary.

Also, I love writing in Markdown. I write my notes in it, and it stands to reason that my blogs would be well written in the sytnax as well.

With this knowledge, I decided to look into several different options. The first option was Wordpress. I created an EC2 micro instance and installed Wordpress on it. It was a rather simple process, and I found some useful plugins. Unfortunately, none of them quite fit the way that I wanted them to. They all required me to use some external editor to really get my code formatted correctly, but still required the use of a database. And worst of all, they didn’t use Github Flavored Markdown.

Enter Jekyll. I can use whatever hosting I want, ec2 instances, my own host, or even Github Pages. Jekyll takes my content and generates static pages for it. I can use my own layout, as well. It’s all based on liquid, which reminds me a lot of Django templates, so it’s pretty easy to write. When I’m ready to publish my blog posts, I can just push them and they’re ready to go.

I’m not going to say it’s perfect, but it is pretty good. I think it will work out well for my once-in-a-while blogs.

Edit: I’m aware that tags aren’t working right now. I think that’s a side-effect of using Github Pages for this. They don’t seem to allow extra plugins. I’ll see if I can find a work-around later.

Also, if you’re interested in seeing the source code for the blog, you can find it here: https://github.com/Dru89/dru89.github.com

Edit 2: I’ve fixed the tags problem by moving to an ec2 micro-instance. One of the upsides of being so portable I guess is easily moving things around.

I added a git hook that automatically rebuilds the static site whenever I push changes to it. This should be fun.

Edit 3: Final edit, I swear. I just found out how to import all of my old posts to Jekyll: https://github.com/mojombo/jekyll/wiki/Blog-Migrations

a photo of me

Andrew Hays

I'm an SDE at Amazon.com, writing services and user interfaces for third-party merchants. When I'm not working, I'm probably redesigning my blog for the thousandth time. I like UI design more than service design.

I'm happily married to Ashley Hays. I was born and raised in Arkansas and attended UALR earning a BS in Mathematics and a BS in Computer Science.

I'm on virtually all of the major social networks, but for the most part, you can find me at the ones below: