Migrating, Again

meta .....

Later: (Yet Another) Lisp In Go
Earlier: From Elegance to Speed

For the fifth or sixth time I am performing a major migration of this site from one implementation to another.

I'd like to do more writing, but the blogging sofware I wrote a few years ago has been slowing me down, literally: it takes several seconds to generate the whole site (something I do repeatedly when I am making changes or additions to the site). I want to be able to post more freely, in smaller chunks, with frequent edits – to some extent, to replicate the ease with which I can post on social media.

I also want to break down the walls between my artistic and my software development work. I've long tried to keep them separate somehow and it no longer feels right, or even honest, to do this.

So: how to reduce friction in posting, and marry art and tech-related posts in a single site?

Past Lives

Previously, this site was written in:

Platform Post Format Static? Era
Pure HTML HTML Y 1994
Various hand-rolled Perl scripts HTML Y 2000
Blosxom text Y 2005
Jekyll Markdown Y
Hand-built Django / Python app text / custom N 2009
Hand-built Clojure app (1) S-expressions Y 2015
Hand-built Clojure app (2) Org Mode Y 2016
??? now

One common thread: I've had good results with "static" Web sites: generate content locally at home, then sync that content to the cloud. The resulting Web sites load fast and are easy to cache.


What I want from the next iteration:

  1. FAST: less than 3 seconds to regenerate the entire site. Ideally, live-update browser pages when the site regenerates.
  2. A smooth path for integrating images of artworks in progress, and technical blogging, on the same platform.
  3. Handle math expressions.
  4. Handle image galleries.
  5. A little wabi-sabi.
  6. Bonus if I can write my content in Org Mode instead of Markdown.


I've been diving deep into Hugo because it checks most of those boxes: the site you're currently looking at was generated with Hugo1. (Currently it takes less than a tenth of a second to generate the entire site.)

Hugo does have a learning curve compared to other systems, which makes sense given the richness of its feature set. I found some helpful hints on this site for working with Org Mode in Hugo.

So far, I've been happy with Hugo, though it's a little strange to use someone else's software for this site!


Any wabi-sabi, always hard to come by on a computer, probably has to emerge from the visual design and, maybe, the writing.

Later: (Yet Another) Lisp In Go
Earlier: From Elegance to Speed