This is an early experiment using ruhoh for blogging. Ruhoh is a static blog generation tool: given properly formatted input content, ruhoh simply generates the fixed code for a blog-style website. This generated code is the website - you can just serve it up, for example from Amazon S3. This style of blog has somewhat recently become a flourishing technological niche; probably the most famous specimen is Jekyll which is used to drive GitHub Pages. I'll briefly describe the appeal of this approach for my needs.

Plaintext

The blog content and styling consists of nothing more than a specially structured directory of plaintext files. This means you can easily write posts in the text editor of your choice, version control everything, and publish from the command-line. Pretty sweet, if you're into that sort of thing.

Simplicity

By definition, a static site has fewer "moving parts" than a fully-loaded dynamic one. This sacrifices some flexibility in terms of commenting, plugins, and other nifty dynamic content. However if you simply want to write things down and put them on The Internet, the loss of these features can be outweighed by the gain of not having to deal with their complexity.

Security

Not to tempt fate, but there is less surface area for security disaster when simply serving static files. More feature-rich blogging platforms require hyper-vigilance around patching and operations, otherwise you can easily find yourself unwittingly advertising counterfeit Russian pharmaceuticals.

Why ruhoh and not X?

A chance tweet pointed me at Jekyll Bootstrap. It looked interesting but its author made a compelling case for his new project ruhoh. In the end I opted to just go for it and try ruhoh instead of spending too much time/effort exploring the vast space options in this space - so far so good.


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Published

2012-07-13

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