Hello, Jekyll

I’ve logged quite a lot of hours battling databases, plugins, and a GUI editor to write (and occasionally design) blog posts. Wordpress has served me well, but to simplify the process I’ve ported my blog to Jekyll. It’s great to be static! Writing already feels more casual and enjoyable.

Over the past few years, Paravel has used Jekyll to build the latest version of our site, Dave’s blog, Reagan’s blog, TMFO, and the DayTrip Blog. We even use it regularly for prototyping with clients.

The familiarity I’d gained on those projects made the process relatively easy. Here’s a rough outline of how it went:

Export & Archive
  1. Via Tomomi Imura’s advice, I exported comments to Disqus.
  2. Content exports via Ben Balter’s Jekyll Exporter Wordpress plugin and the WP Static HTML Output plugin
  3. For good measure, I also FTP’d down all my files and backed up the server before launching the Jekyll version.
Measured Current Site Performance
Jekyll Setup
  1. Followed the quick start instructions
  2. Dropped all Wordpress jekyll-export/_posts files into the Jekyll _posts folder
  3. Created unique layouts for articles and notes
  4. Confirmed article art direction CSS made it to front matter
Added Features
Tidy Up
  • Added static pages and a 404
  • Fixed broken paths thanks to find & replace in project

At this point, I decided to leave off comments for now. I’m still on the fence, but am going to experiment with correspondence via social channels and (hopefully) other people’s blogs :)

There are heaps more to optimize and improve, but it’s been an enjoyable experience thus far. The writing process feels great again, and I have a new place to play (even though it’s the same old blog)!

Let me know if you spot any glaring errors or omissions. In the meantime, I’ll just leave this list of ideas for future improvements here for reference:

  • Improve performance
  • Clean up (reduce) tags
  • Research CDNs & caching
  • Think about sans body type
  • Experiment with CSS Grid on my homepage
  • Tie in other articles with more TLC than tags
  • Build a new layout for non-legacy articles so I can create unique article designs easier
Tag(s): Design