So, Jekyll is a static site generator written in Ruby. I uses a template engine called Liquid which supports a number of markdown flavors, as well as HTML. You can therefore write your blog posts in HTML or markdown, and then make Jekyll generate a static HTML page for you.
A number reasons is behind this decision. I was really never that happy with my WordPress solution, I had a hard time with the themes. Actually I never found a theme that I really liked. So my reasons to migrate can be outlined in the following bullets.
- I really had a hard time working with the WordPress themes, I couldn’t find one that fitted my needs and I found customizations hard.
- I’m a markdown lover. It really fits my needs. I feel much more productive writing beautiful posts and notes using markdown. I try to use it everywhere I can. I recently got markdown support in Confluence from Atlassian. We use Confluence for documents at work.
- I like that I can sit down and write my blog posts in my favorite markdown editor, currently MarkdownPad, and just git commit and push it to my blog.
- One of the things that was really hard for me when using WordPress, was how code is rendered. I tried different approaches, but neither seemed to fit my needs.
- All the themes I tried out, did not render nicely on mobile or tablet.
So therefore I migrated to GitHub Pages.
Basically I followed Hadi Hariri’s guide. Although Hadi’s post is based on installing Jekyll on OSX (Linux and Unix is also supported out of the box), and I wanted to install this on Windows, his guide is good starting point.
To install Jekyll on Windows I followed Julian Thilo’s guide. Once you’re done with Hadi’s and Julian’s guides, you have all your blog posts in the
_posts folder as HTML.
I then spend some time finding a Jekyll theme that would cover most of my needs. At this point I could start tweaking the
_config.yml and the templates in
_layout. You can use your HTML and CSS skills to modify and tweak your blog to look exactly as you would like.
I write my blog posts in markdown, and the Liquid templates takes care of how it is rendered.
No. I’m still not completely satisfied with the looks of the blog. I’m still in the progress of changing bits and pieces. One of the things I would really like, is an archive feature, to where I can reference for specific categories. I also need to change the landing page. I don’t like the current ‘list’ view. There are other more or less advanced changes that is would like to apply.
Throw me a comment of what you think about the new layout of my blog.