The State of Blogging
I moved my blog from Wordpress to Jekyll. More importantly, I moved my blog from 1and1 to GitHub Pages. Here are some thoughts on this move, and the current state of blogging:
Default themes are in
As I get older, I’m becoming more appreciative of default themes. I think this is the direction the web is going and is one of the reasons we see platforms like medium and substack take off. The other reason being network effects.
Self-hosted commenting systems are out
I feel like websites having their own commenting systems are a relic of the past. I’ve trashed all the comments built up on my website over the years.
Discussions on blog topics are happening on platforms like reddit, hackernews, and twitter. This is probably because these platforms are familiar, and the network effects make these a more effective. A lot of time people want to comment on something so their existing followers can see it, not just the author of the blog.
The comments I get are ~80% spam, ~20% asking for free help (better to just post on stack overflow), and <2% interesting additions/criticism. The overhead of moderating this spam is not worth the hassle. So… fuck it.
Wordpress is awesome, I just don’t need it right now
Wordpress powers 43% of the web.
43 percent… of the entire internet!
Wordpress is an incredible open source success story. It’s succeeded at scale with thousands of contributors. Wordpress gets a bad wrap because people pile on shifty plugins until the system is unusable, but the core of wordpress is an incredibly beautiful paradigm. WP introduced me to the idea of middleware, lifecycle methods and hooks… sound familiar?
If I was to run a blog with multiple authors, or any functionality beyond hosting very simple static pages, I’d go straight to wordpress again. The plugin ecosystem is incredible, you just have to vet it like you would any npm package. KISS, only add what you really need.
IONOS is shady
They charge you for “legacy PHP support” and make you jump through hoops to upgrade it like it’s some kind of strategy to increase their sales. I went through the upgrade process 6-7 times for all my various projects and they still found ways to charge me. 👎