This blog has been hosted on Google’s Blogger platform ever since its incarnation. The decision to use Blogger was a quite hasty one and I was never really satisfied by how Blogger works. But as many of you probably have already experienced, once you decide in favor of a piece of software you can’t change that easily. It’s not that my blog was locked-in on Blogger’s features or something. In fact it just worked and I had no real incentive to take the time for evaluating alternatives.
Now after enjoying the first weeks of summer break travelling around I took the last two days to finally migrate my blog to something more usable. I actually had a very short list of requirements:
- have the ability to host the blog on my own server
- posting must be very easy
I blame the long intervals between posts on this blog partly on the awful Blogger interface so requirement 2 was actually very important. I like blog software (or any CMS, actually) that’s file-based, i.e. every post is just a file and the CMS takes care of it. Actually, I wanted to try a CMS which generates static HTML files, for simplicity’s (and server performance’s) sake. My guide in the insanely huge world of static site generators was this: 32 Static Website Generators For Your Site, Blog Or Wiki. I tried some on that list – bluntly ignoring those with awful names or websites – and finally ended up with Jekyll.
Most of the two days it took me to migrate from Blogger to Jekyll were spent on choosing the right theme (which should be clean and mobile-friendly) and copying/pasting the posts. I know there are tools to automatically migrate posts but I dare to assume that it would have taken longer to get one of these tools up and running than to just create the Markdown files by hand.
In the end I’m pretty happy with the results: The blog is much cleaner now, hosted on my own server using static pages written by me in Markdown syntax with a publishing process that consists of one step: trigger rsync.
I expect blogging to be much more fun now, with the result of writing more posts in the future. Topics will stay the same: Open Source/Free Software, Web Development, the Web Platform and my current research progress on Peer-to-Peer networks + WebRTC.
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