Houston we Have a Blog

I really hate these "first post" posts, yet here I am writing one. So without further ado, I decided to start a blog, and this is my first post. Lets get it over with…

Blog Specification

I'm a designer, and just as I'm picky with my design I'm picky with my everything. It'll be no surprise to anyone who knows how pertinently pointed my specifications tend to be that no standard blogging platform satisfied me. Here's why:

Delirious PHP creator bear

My exact requirements were:

Blog Solution

After a bit of googling I found a minimal open source solution that fit my needs. Postmarkdown is a small Rails engine. As the name suggests, all posts are written in Markdown, then simply placed into a 'Posts' folder within the 'App' directory. There is no CMS or admin section; updating the blog simply requires a git push heroku master from the terminal. This was a breath of fresh air to my ears.

Ruby on Rails logo

Since it's a Rails engine, I was able to code the rest of the site in the (now familiar to me) Rails way. The Photography page, for example, uses a model to pull photos from the DeviantArt API.

It didn't quite do everything I wanted initially, but since it's so simple and customisable I was able to add the functionality I needed. I changed the load logic so that each post can reside within a folder containing its images and a stylesheet, thus art directed posts are now possible. I also added a few routes and a controller action to enable categories.

Result

Here you are, this very post is being served to you hot from my modified Postmarkdown blogging engine. This post is using the standard minimal theme, while future posts may have their own styles. I'm very pleased with how it has turned out; none of my specifications escaped me. It's refreshingly simple to create posts, so hopefully I wont find any excuses not to do so.


And with that, I end this first post as awkwardly as I started it. I intend future posts to be more fluid and interesting. Hopefully. Bye then!