Over the course of the last several months, I’ve been busy building out my website utilizing Jekyll instead of Wordpress. It’s not my first time moving away from Wordpress, but I think it will end up being permanent.
I do want to write more and I do hope to do so soon, but the fact of the matter is that in all honesty, I really don’t blog as much as I want. This lack of posts has the distinct advantage of trying in with what was the biggest difference to me between Jekyll and WordPress. Jekyll does not use or require a database.
Instead, it uses files to identify the individual pages and posts. Want to add a new post? Just add a file to the posts folder with a given filename format. Jekyll is part of a new trend with static website generators and I have to say that for my current needs, this works out perfectly.
Because Jekyll just uses files to handle the posts, it makes backing up much simpler. Hell, I can just keep everything in a Git repository and I’m good to go…which is exactly what I do.
As for the design, I decided I wanted something a little more simple. I do love the cover images, but decided that want really what I wanted for the new look. I decided I liked the idea of a short summary about myself in a sidebar with the main content in the main section. It’s simple, and in my humble opinion, elegant. I didn’t want to get rid of images completely and I wanted to keep something there to continue the “feel” of a cover image without actually having a cover image. To do this, I decided to add an image header to pages and posts that was easily able to be customized, but yet still compelling. I actually like it because I can change it between a 1, 2 or 3 image header very easily.
I still have a few things I want to do to improve it. It is responsive, and looks good on both desktop and mobile. The images however, could be better optimized, so I’ll probably do what I can to improve that for mobile once the holiday season is over and things calm down some. I want to make a few CSS tweaks here and there as well, but nothing major. The only thing I’m still debating on is whether I want to bother with comments. I’m leaning against it at the moment figuring people can get a hold of me on Twitter or other social media channels if they want, but of course I could change my mind down the road.
As part of this change I also ended up moving my hosting from Rackspace to Amazon Web Services. I’ve been meaning to look into AWS and finally decided to give it a try. Having your own server is convenient, but there’s something to be said to not have to worry about it when you’re only running a simple blog. I still have other sites on Rackspace, but we’ll see how long they remain there.
Let me know what you think.