New Beginnings

27 Sep 2014

It’s been nearly five years since the last redesign of this site and I decided to try something new. Previous versions of my website were custom built in PHP and backed by a database. While this gave me unlimited possibilities it also meant that any small modification required a lot of time and effort. I have decided to ditch a dynamic website in favour of a static site built using Jekyll that, hopefully, will mean posting new articles will take less effort and happen more often.

I was able to get a basic website running in Jekyll that provided most of the functionality I wanted within a few hours. I needed some additional functionality so I wrote two plugins for Jekyll to add support for a tag cloud and to make integration of code highlighting with prism seamless. I will have blog posts on these in the future. I haven’t really developed much with Ruby so the plugins might not be the best but I am always open to improvements. After getting the basic website running I switched from doing straight CSS to SASS along with the Bourbon mixin library. Bourbon was new to me but I have done work with SASS before so this wasn’t much of a challenge.

Finally I used GitHub pages to host the site, but because I use custom plugins that are not supported by GitHub I have to build the site manually. To accomplish this I created a source branch that contains the Jekyll site and have master only contain the static HTML pages.

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