Website (not blogging) Ennui

This entry was published at least two years ago (originally posted on February 27, 2019). Since that time the information may have become outdated or my beliefs may have changed (in general, assume a more open and liberal current viewpoint). A fuller disclaimer is available.

I’m not really happy with my website — I’m tired of WordPress, and ‘view source’ just makes me cringe at all the junk, cruft, and JavaScript bogging down what could and should be relatively simple, clean, HTML/CSS — but I don’t know how to reinvigorate it in a way I like.

I don’t want to entirely stop blogging, nor do I want to lose all the stuff that’s here already, or break existing URLs.

I’ve been looking into various flat-file or static CMS backends, and though grav is the one that most caught my eye, it (as far as I can tell) would mean losing the ability to post through or any other third-party app that uses the MetaWeblog API, which would make spur-of-the-moment posts more difficult.

Even if I did resign myself to only adding posts through the admin UI (or by FTPing in to manually build the folder/file structure that grav uses), if I figured out how to import all my past entries from WordPress (this might do it), I haven’t been able to find a way to tweak the URL structure, which means I’d probably have to figure out how to generate a huge .htaccess file to handle the 5,170 or so redirects so I didn’t break any existing URLs. I may not get linked to a lot, but it happens occasionally, and I’d prefer not to 404 those.

(Plus, as I was playing with grav, I kept getting blank screens where I should have been getting post entry or edit screens, which…well, not sure if that’s a grav issue, a Safari browser issue, or some other issue, but it didn’t bode well.)

Other backends either looked too complex for my current needs/skills/available time (I just don’t have the time or impetus to try to learn Jekyll, which kept popping up), or didn’t fully support Markdown at all or enough, or had one or another thing that made them feel “not right” for me.

Really, what I’d kind of like to do is go back to hand-coding my site, so I have full control over the HTML/CSS (even if it looks like crap, it’ll look like my crap…so to speak), only to still be able to blog easily using or Ulysses or other such tools. Not sure that’s really a possibility, though.

In the end, this isn’t much more than a bit of whinging and trying to figure out what exactly I’m looking for. But if anyone actually 1) reads this, and 2) has a magical solution for all my woes, I’d be happy to hear it!