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Linda's blog about coding and probably more likely cats

Lions and tigers and Jekylls, oh my!

This is the first post in a blog that is the result of some experimentation into methods of creating and maintaining simple blogs. This experience started with some of the mainstream blogging platforms such as Wordpress and Tumblr, continued into exploration into the open-source realm of the Ghost blogging platform, and finally settled on Jekyll/Github Pages.

What I was looking for

Things I had to consider about myself

Benefits of Jekyll

Postifying your Github page

The Github pages by default uses Jekyll, so getting your basic theme page ready for blog posts is really easy:

Even after including time to browse through the Jekyll documentation, setting up this basic blogging structure should only take a tech-savvy person less than an hour.

Grunts like a Jekyll

I've found Grunt to be a really useful tool for running some basic deployment tasks in Javascript. You'll need to be running Node to get started on your local development environment, but then it's as easy as following the steps in the [documentation](http://gruntjs.com/getting-started). Using some of the many Grunt plugins, I was able to pretty easily add tasks to run compile my Less to css and deploy the result to my site. I also added the Jekyll build tasks to my Gruntfile so that I can completely manage the blog through Grunt. As with everything else in the evolution of this project, I plan to add more tasks and explore the power of Grunt.

The way forward

As far as the look and feel of the blog, my very non-ambitious plan is to incorporate Twitter Bootstrap into Jekyll templates. However, to get this started, I just created the most basic functioning blog that doesn't look awful. The very basic scaffolding is in place for npm and bower package management, and grunt tasks for Less compilation and some other cleanup. From this point, I've got to convert the css to Less, integrate Bootstrap with Bower, and finally add some personality in the way of code and graphics. This is likely just be the first phase of an ongoing project to keep improving this blog with newer and better tools that I'm trying out. It may also just be the temporary tinkering with Jekyll and may be re-written in a few months.

See future posts for updates on the journey...