It’s a post about motivation to blog, blogging services and engines I’ve tried last years. I want to tell to all IT crowd, to everyone who knows what versioning and blogging mean leave theirs blogsposts, wordpresses, tumblrs and to start blogging with Jekyll right now.
I’ve started this blog a week ago and it’s my third blog, and first one created using Jekyll. No matter if you’re familiar with Jekyll or not, give me a try to describe why it’s the best one tool for you, geek. So shut up and read next.
My first blog was dedicated to learn programming and to collecting info about technologies, programming languages and tools. I’ve created it 4 or 5 years ago.
It used to be simple and not pretending on something meaningful for people and visitors I don’t know personally. I’ve decided to choose Wordpress to drive it, and at first time it was very easy to create posts purposed to achieve my thoughts on topics I have had interest in. But it failed after month of usage. The main cause of it was that I want more and more simple features. I need code highlighting. I need easily add photos and videos, screencasts, but beautiful and simple Wordpress admin interface was becoming more and more muddle. Fast writing blog posts became just writing HTML and then I’ve started to write posts rarely and rarely and then removed the blog completely, because it became big and ugly blot which I can’t maintain and, yes, I couldn’t love it.
After such terrible experience I’ve decided to never blog for few years, but all things was changed since I’ve tried Tumblr. I liked it because Tumblr is not just blog engine, but social network, where you can get touched with someones who are thinking and doing as you. But it wasn’t so different, certainly excluding problems with media content. At the time there was not a big amount of IT blogs on it and my blog fails once more. I’ve lost the motivation to write.
Certain months ago I then decided to start blog on Blogspot.com and to write in my native language. It was giving to me charm to easily manage posts and share them, observe statistics, which gives more fun and motivate to do more.
But this one project failed too. It was failed since I’ve started to post more serious and more big posts. Ugly blogspot UI to write post was not adapted to keep me focused and I became to prepare text in plain text editor, improving it with HTML tags and preview it at first in browser, then pasting it into Blogspot UI.
Once I’ve considered and deeply understood what’s wrong with all that tools. They are all demotivating me all the time I’m trying to leave my thoughts on the web. It would be suitable for professional writers and bloggers may be who are ready to bear with it for the sake of raising money on ads or getting paid for it from employer. But not in my case.
If you want to blog, you should blog frequently. You should everyday spend a minute or half an hour to post new article, no matter how big or how interesting it would be. And what you exactly need is concentration. Concentration on content and not on painting and whistling the text. Once comprehended it I’ve started to dig to find tool which would help me focus on text. I’ve touched an idea of minimalistic text editor Ommwriter. But it hadn’t nothing to do with blog posts, just helps you write text in new meditative way, avoiding procrastination and focus losing.
And then Jekyll came into my life. Some GitHub project’s page has attracted me and I’ve dived in, right from the Jekyll Bootstrap page I’ve started my test blog, played around and had got fun of writing posts in my favourite text editor (Sublime) and publish it using Git.
You don’t need to switch between your apps and browser anymore, you don’t ever need to leave your IDE or text editor to make content. You don’t need any additional plugins to post images, videos, source codes, Gists or anything else. And you get full control on what happening with layout and content. Because Jekyll serves you content-oriented way to direct your website/blog, giving you incredible simple way to extend functionality of Liquid template engine via Ruby plugins, and more, GitHub Pages serves you 99.999% available fault-tolerant free online hosting and Git empowers you with best in the world versioning system. So your content will be absolutely yours, you don’t need to make backups and with GitHub you may easily collaborate to make your site community-driven.
Why not to switch to Jekyll right now? It’s free and will make you weep from blogging pleasure.