Updating this blog

Earlier in the year, the Geedew blog was going through a bit of downtime. Mostly this was caused by the incorrect installation of Wordpress settings. Geedew.com is deployed and ran with Ansible, and Wordpress was simply too much for how little is actually hosted here. Also, Geedew.com was slow and quite ugly. Not exactly amazing work for a professional web developer. The server needed to move and new things needed to be tried.

Wordpress must be removed.

Server Move

This site runs within Digital Ocean. That allows for easy maintenance and expansion. But, previously, Ubuntu 15.04 was being used and Docker really wasn’t going to work that well. Not to mention, server setup and deployment is automated with Ansible. Moving to a new DO server was a must, so Ubuntu 17.04 is now in place.

Not using Wordpress

Wordpress is fine. I even recently used it to build out Grace Bible Church Northwest and prior to this, I’ve used it on this site since… 2009?! Yeah, as a long time user and PHP developer, I was in very early on Wordpress. A few things just weren’t working out for me.

  1. Large security surface for little gain; hard to secure
  2. Slow, and caching was way too complicated to work with
  3. Too much stuff I would NEVER use
  4. Pages are too hard to grok
  5. Constant updates to the core and plugins
  6. Theme’ing is way too complicated to really get into it.

Long live Hexo.js

I’m really liking the simplicity and usefulness of having a static html website. Hexo, like the popular Jekyll it has a lot in common with, fit the bill of being a Node setup that I was looking for. In development, I can have a quick Node server, while in Geedew.com I’m able to have Nginx hosting the static html.

Lots more coming

I’m hoping to deliver small features over time. I’ve cut back and that allows me to work on delivering the small details in quality releases.

  1. Auto-delivery of the site via changes on Dropbox
  2. Updates to the landing page to include non-blog things
  3. Experimenting with photo posts.
  4. Image header and custom post information.

What actually changed?

Everything changed between the html tags. I was able to convert the logo to an SVG and that also meant the entire color scheme changed as well.
The dates, tags, archive links were all removed. Instead, I wanted to have relative dates to get a feel for the age of a post (3 days ago, etc). Some of those will come back if and when I decide to add it.
All the colors and design is new. And it will improve over time.