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Bleep bloop, programming

The Blaugust Reborn mentors are busy posting this week about how to get started blogging, and so naturally there's been some focus on what blogging platform to use; the endless wars of preference of Wordpress vs. Blogger vs. Tumblr and the like; should you self-host or use a third party platform? What template, what plugins, what name, what domain? Theres' just so much to consider.

And here's me, writing my own blogging platform, hosted on my own server. I have only one piece of advice: don't do this. Sure, if you've the know-how and a bit of web development background, it might seem like a good idea. Having gone ahead and done it, I'm not so convinced. Not that I haven't enjoyed the process; I'm pretty pleased with the site as it stands. But doing it entirely yourself does have its drawbacks. It's time-consuming, for one. A few days ago I had a little time to spare and I was going to write a post, but ended up implementing pagination instead. And then there was a little issue with the RSS feed that needed tweaking. And then I re-wrote some of the behind-the-scenes page generation to be a little quicker. And so on, and so on.

I've survived Blaugust once before, so I know I can do it if I put my mind to it. Stupidly I thought writing the entire site at the same time would be an interesting added challenge (and I suppose it is) but it will take an extra burst of commitment here and there. I'll be happy if I come out of Blaugust with a month's worth of posts and a functional blog.

There's a handful of things I want to add over the coming month:

  • Photo galleries with thumbnails and slideshow
  • OpenGraph support
  • Analytics -- currently I have no idea if anyone is reading this!
  • A redesign of the template so it's a bit nicer looking

Dear reader, would you do me a favour? If on your visit you see something wonky, a broken image, a broken page, an RSS entry that isn't quite right in your reader, please do let me know, by comment, or a quick tweet or by messaging me in the Blaugust Discord. I want to know these things so I can get them ironed out.