This is the first post on my new blog. I’ll be writing about various unrelated things that happen to interest me at the time. This blog used to be on WordPress, then Jekyll hosted on Github pages, and this iteration uses Hugo and AWS for hosting. I believe I’ll stick with Hugo and AWS for some time as I’ve never enjoyed a CMS and hosting setup as much as this.
Hugo is a pleasure to use due to its speed and flexibility. It works wonderfully for a minimalist blog like this, as you might expect, but I’ve also been able to build something with a slightly more complex structure, and can see that Hugo could easily handle far more complexity than that. It’s also been great reading the Hugo source code, as recently I’ve become more and more interested in Go.
As with most static site generators, another joy of using Hugo is that I get to work on my content as files in markdown. Using Sublime Text with its speed and rich feature set to edit aesthetically pleasing text files is a world away from battling with WordPress’ WYSIWYG over a Web interface (like Jeff Atwood, I’ve never been a fan of WYSIWYG). It’s also great to be able to keep all my content in version control and easily use Unix command line tools on it etc.
I also love static sites because it’s so easy to optimise them for speed. Fast- loading web pages are satisfying, and having static content gives you a huge advantage on that front. It’s also easy to add other optimisations like minification and gzip, as well as hosting it from a CDN. This blog uses all of those, as well as having a very minamalist theme (< 50 lines of css so far).
Because of all this, I’ve already got two sites (a Chinese grammar site and a Chinese learning blog) on this setup, and am considering moving my first site to it as well.
As for this one, I just need to get a commenting system set up, and produce more content :)