I started to test Ghost blogging platform as a base for my new sports blog with mixed feelings.
On the other hand the Ghost ( Ghost.org ) has managed to create the hype and evidently has done something right to get people to get interested. Then again it is the hype and some technology choices that make me feel not so good.
Setting Ghost to run with Node.js on your machine was easy — as well as setting up forever to run the Node.js process on the server. Editing / Authoring posts was also a breeze on the Ghost — so in principle the UI works really well. It worked especially well for me as I usually store images in Flickr and files elsewhere — so the blog engine does not need to handle static assets for me.
However in the current version of Ghost there are not that many features available yet – and the roadmap ahead is a bit spotty on what the focus will be. They have lots of work to be done – and apparently have done architecture refactoring, so what happens and when it happens is quite open.
As I spoke about Ghost with friend of mine, he suggested to look also static website generation possibilities and how they would fit my needs. Based on his own experiences I decided to look at Jekyll ( http://jekyllrb.com/ ) and was impressed how well it worked, especially as they had a Ghost-like theme called Kasper available.
The benefits of running a static site that is produced with Jekyll is evident, but naturally downsides are similarly clear. You don’t have nice online editing features as with CMS — and need access to the filesystem or use Github Pages and use external editor like Prose.io.
With few searches I managed to find also interesting project – Markdown editor called Dillinger ( http://dillinger.io/ ), which could be used as an editor — if I had energy to build own webapp to enable user to edit content on filesystem and then run the jekyll workflow to publish the static content into a site.
Naturally I also suggested the idea to Ghost also:
Apparently in future versions it could be possible to create an app that publishes changed posts into the filesystem and from there on launch the Jekyll toolchain to publish the site.
That is something that I will look forward testing and trying out.