I’ve been playing with Jekyll recently. It’s a static site generator with an AsciiDoc module.

AsciiDoc is my preferred markup language, which I use for my presentations and really anywhere else I can.

I like the simplicity of a static site and am pleased with how easy it is to roll out updates.

Jekyll allows creating pages in AsciiDoc or MarkDown, both of which are plain text file formats. It probably works with other markups as well, I haven’t looked. Since Jekyll can use plain text files it’s easy to keep them in a revision control tool like RCS or git.

When you make a change, you call jekyll to build a new version of the site. I do all that in a container. Then, when I’ve tested that the update works I sync the changes out to whereever I’m hosting the site.

I tried several other static site generators. Jekyll was the one that worked with Debian packages out of the distro repos with AsciiDoc support. That was all it took to win me over :).

Thus far I’m much happier updating the jekyll site than I was with the CMS I’ve used for many, many years. The CMS is great. It’s far easier to add modules and features than with Jekyll. That ease of use was handy when I wanted to setup a wedding site with invites. I had to make some PHP changes to get the invites to work like I wanted, but that wasn’t very difficult. Haven’t used any complex features in years and am annoyed at needing to copy and paste to use AsciiDoc with the CMS.

I don’t really use all those features now, so the static site is more enticing. Simple deployement is a huge plus for me. Being able to use AsciiDoc and not need the AsciiDoc tools on my web server is also fantastic.

Theming is going to be much more difficult than with the graphical clicky-clicky tools from the CMS. I will miss that. Hopefully not too much.

Consider this page a jekyll-canary, if it goes away I probably stopped using jekyll :).