I loved my old site. It was simple with only a bio and some contact links, and that suited me perfectly. But with how quickly the web moves, I started getting the itch to try something new.
I decided on a few things ahead of time.
- I wanted to use a static site generator (SSG). A CMS was overkill for my purposes.
- I wanted to open source it.
- I wanted to keep it as simple as possible.
The answer to all three points was Github Pages. Pages is a very simple yet powerful hosting service provided by Github. The sites are inherently open source and built on the static site generator, Jekyll.
Getting started was a piece of cake. The Jekyll docs are comprehensive, and putting a site together is little more than editing raw .html files. SASS preprocessing is built in which meant I could simplify the pipeline by removing gulp or grunt. Even better is Github Pages compiles the site directly on their servers, so you can simply edit the files by committing changes to your repo.
The nicest thing about working with an SSG is that it stays out of your way. You don’t have Wordpress inserting rogue paragraph tags or database connection errors. The focus is on the content and little else. The design I ended up with reflected that, and after about a week of tweaking I’m happy with how it looks.
As much as I loved my old one, it was time for a new site.