Why did you leave WordPress?
WordPress is great. I recommend it for almost everything. That being said, I love to play with new things. I had heard of Jekyll, a static site generator, and its integration with GitHub Pages, and thought I’d try it out.
Jekyll is a static site generator written in Ruby. Where as with WordPress, all content is stored in a database and retrieved when it is needed to build the currently requested page, Jekyll skips the database and all pages are pre-compiled and ready to serve. This provides a number of benefits.
- Speed - All pages are ready to be served, nothing is required on the backend.
- Security - There is no database to be hacked or corrupted, there is no admin that needs to be protected. To restore a site, simply delete the files and re-upload them.
- Your content, in your hands - Posts are written in markdown and then compiled into html. The original files are on your hard drive, or better yet, they live on GitHub.
So far my experience with jekyll has been pleasant. My first ‘job’ was creating a theme. I had built two WordPress themes before Mine and Pummel. Compared to WordPress themes, I found Jekyll theming to be more straight forward.
Another challenge was the lack of comments. This was easily solved by using Disqus.
The site is still a work in progress.
- I need investigate the SEO abilities as compared to WordPress and Yoast.
- I would like to create archive pages for categories and tags.
- I still need to integrate social sharing for each post.
I know that there are plugins to enable some of these features, but GitHub Pages restricts the use of all but a few plugins, and I can’t bring myself to pass on the free hosting!