Hello, Ghost! Goodbye, Octopress.

If you have been to my blog before, you may notice a pretty significant change - I have migrated from Jekyll + Octopress, served by Github Pages, to a hosted Ghost instance.

(Update: I wrote a guide for the migration, if you are looking to do the same thing).

Octopress was great, but for my needs it was just too much. It was too much effort to create, edit, and publish blog posts. The fact that I wanted to serve the blog out of a subdirectory on Github Pages made it bizarrely more difficult. In the end, I was in a situation where I would want to write a quick blog post about something but using the tools made it feel like a chore, and I would end up just passing on the whole endeavor.

There are definitely some great things about Octopress, but it just isn't for me. Using a hosted Ghost instance takes the maintainence out of my hands (for a small fee, obviously), gives me all of the customization that I care about keeping (ability to write custom code for the theming & site itself), and it provides a really great in-browser Markdown editor for writing and pushing posts. In short, it gives me what I want, and takes care of everything else. The interface is clean and straight-forward, and I actually enjoy writing posts, again - so that's pretty great.

The move itself was pretty easy, actually. I spent more time customizing this theme than I did migrating my data to the new platform. I deleted a number of posts in the move to help clean things up. It was pretty easy to migrate the discussions on Disqus, so I actually didn't lose any of the thread discussions for the threads that I did keep.

There are some obvious downsides to the move. The biggest one is simply losing the old post URLs. A number of my posts were actually generating quite a few hits per day based on static URLs that had been passed around. Obviously, those are gone now. Along the same note, none of the data I have in Google Analytics for those pages will carry over - it's basically a reboot in terms of generating traffic to the site. I decided it was worth it, though - if I wasn't generating new content because I didn't like the site, the traffic would slowly die out, anyway.

There are still a few things that the new blog is missing that I would like to work in eventually, including a post archive, tag list, and search ability. For now, though, I'm really happy with it.

Welcome to the new blog! =)

Ben Hilburn

Ben Hilburn

bits, nibbles, bytes, and words
D.C. Metro Area