For a long time, my site had the subtitle, “Another Day, Another Platform.” Well, I’m afraid that’s, true again. If memory serves, in the nearly 10 years of this website’s existence, I’ve moved platforms at least five times. Clearly memory isn’t serving or that would be an actual number. I’ve been with Blogger using iFrames, Movable Type to generate static HTML (heh, more on this later), WordPress and WordPress and WordPress, and my own incarnation once or twice in there.
So why switch again? Boredom? Needed a change? A little bit of all of it.
My new platform is called Octopress. At it’s core, it’s a set of scripts that generate (wait for it) a static website. No fancy databases – or stupid ones for that matter. No complicated admin console. Just some scripts and a pile of text files. This has some huge advantages for someone like me, though. First, text files are easy and cheap to maintain and backup. I can zip up my site and have instant, daily backups that are ready to redeploy anywhere. Speaking of anywhere, I can more often than not access a text editor anywhere I am, be it on my phone, iPad, or anyone’s computer with a Terminal and SSH client. I know WordPress has an iPhone/iPad app, but it never really did it for me. Third (that anywhere bit was second), this method of blogging lends itself more naturally to how I write. I’ve wanted to be a more technical blogger for a while, and Octopress has some pretty graceful and easy methods for inputting and formatting code, as well as linking to a dozen other things. Namely, making install notes – something I should do a lot more often – is super easy since it’s just a text file to keep open and paste successful code bits into.
I’ll have more thoughts as I go on, and write about the journey, but since my test deploy was incredibly destructive (RTFD, seriously), I was instantly incentivized to get something exciting up. Also, take a peek on a modern mobile phone – the built in skin is pretty slick there.