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So Now With Jekyll

22 Aug 2010

Why would you move your blog from a fantastic dynamic blogging engine like Typo to a static site generator like Jekyll? Or maybe the question should be, when can you move your blog… because, if you look at it long enough, you might find it has many enviable advantages. Here is what made the move feel right for me.

First, your server will like it and will be speedier. Blog post are static and having a dynamic runtime to serve them only slows down the viewer’s experience. What still need to be dynamic, like embedding realtime Twitter updates, can mostly be implemented using client side javascript. Ready made solutions already exists for all sorts of realtime services, like Disqus viewers comments and Facebook status updates.

It will also reduce administrative chores while augmenting the designer’s freedom. No more esoteric server setup to maintain, risking compatibility breakages with every updates to libraries and runtime dependencies. Jekyll is easily installed on the editor’s system with powerful templating facilities using Liquid, elegant syntax highlighting using Pygments, eloquent markdown using RedCloth and a local auto reloading web server setup for fast dynamic development. You locally own your blog and its dependencies. No database backend to backup and maintain. No remote configuration using administrative login. It’s all there in your text editor. You compose, see results right away, tweek to your tastes, and sync your local updates with your remote server.

Jekyll is lovely and lively. It is blog aware, making it easy to include content partials within cascading layouts and it implements clever features, for easy cross components integration. It is under constant development and its community includes, amongst others, the notable Github. It feels light, flexible and transparent. Statically generated with dynamic content is versatile blog editing beamed through fast page rendering.

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