New Blog Location: Feedback Welcomed!

Well, after a few months, I finally got around to doing some work with blog rehosting.

This is very much beta, very much in flux, very much likely to be broken in weird ways, but… feedback welcome.

Things not yet done:

  • All the posts, obviously. They’re requiring some manual love, though I’ve automated a lot of it.
  • Comments. I’m going to use Conversation for this, and it’s going to be disruptive as all hell while I make 240-someodd comment threads with the existing comments. Sorry, you should be able to mute the category while it’s being disruptive.
  • Various stuff like the about page needs work.
  • New posts. I’m going to finish copying the old stuff in before I put new content in.
  • RSS/Atom/etc. Just not present yet, in any form.

Alright. I should have most of 2020’s content uploaded, and I should be running on Cloudflare, backed by Google Cloud Storage Bucket “We’re Not S3” storage for the static content hosting. Comments are not yet working or at all integrated, so don’t expect them yet.


And, I would appreciate some opinions on my “all posts” listing.


Looking good, very modern looking template.

For project blogs I like the second style of all-posts listing with a picture included. My only idea for a tweak would be to make the images smaller, so maybe a couple post headlines can be seen at a time. Makes it quick to search visually.

Yeah, I’m leaning towards keeping the images, if I can only figure out how to make them a bit smaller. Maybe borrow the “tiling” style from the front page and go that route.

Alright, take a look now - it’s the same as the front page, but shows them all.

I may see if I can figure out “year” headers too.

You might want to make at least one new post - the first post at the new blog is “end of the blog” :crazy_face:

Other than that - it looks really slick and even supports my default dark mode!

Yes, I have some new posts that will be going up, but I’m still focusing on moving old posts over for now. I need to move the posts, and then solve comments (which will probably make a hash of the latest stuff on this forum with a couple hundred comment thread posts, though many don’t have comments worth saving on them), and then I can start with new stuff when I toggle the old blog entirely over to the new one. I decided against a “split blog” where I have some content at the old site and some at the new site.

what are you doing for discoverability?

yeah, that looks really good. Single picture and informative titles, easy to search for what interests you or find that one article you wanted to re-read.

Flipping the big “domain redirect” switch on the old blog so that everything redirects to the new location. I’ve got redirects in place on the new blog so that the blogspot URL will auto-redirect to the proper location in the new permalink format. I still have to go through and replace all my internal blog links with the new locations, but I’ll do that after I’ve finished importing all the posts. This should cover both search engines and links to the old blog properly.

I assume the old stuff will exist in a form that allows redirects for long enough to be useful.

Looks good, what’s the tech stack if you don’t mind me asking?

I’ll be doing a post on it, but right now, it’s Jekyll with a few plugins for the rendering. I’ve got the files hosted on Google Cloud Storage Buckets (or whatever they call them - it’s S3, but not Amazon), and Cloudflare is in front of that, handling the caching and delivery.

If I decide I want to host it somewhere different, I just move the files around to somewhere else, repoint Cloudflare, and I’m on a different provider. Or skip Cloudflare, or… whatever. I’ve got flexibility now.

I will be making a hash of Conversation in a few days, though, as I import comments…

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Alright, I think I’ve worked it out so that the comment threads I’m about to start spamming this evening don’t clutter the front page by default. I’m happy to leave them muted for now as I work out the details of how I’m going to make comments work going forward. If you see a ton of comment threads, please let me know, they should be muted by default for everyone…

Now has a comment thread hosted here. Should, ideally, not be in people’s way.

I’ll continue copying comments around tonight.

Excellent. Comments manually pasted in, search fixed.

Big redirect switch toggled.

Annoyingly there’s not a transparent redirect, but… the point is made. And I can’t fault them for warning people they’re heading offsite. Hopefully the search engines pick it up… but, at this point, I really don’t care as much, because I’m not doing any advertising or tracking at the moment.


Looks like you’re using Jekyll? What other bits and pieces are you using?

That’s about it.

Bought a theme, using jekyll_picture_tag to handle the responsive image stuff, tweaked the CSS a bit, tossed an atom.xml in there for RSS-ish stuff (which needs tweaking, images don’t show up in the emails), and I have to throw a few more bits and pieces in, but the core is Jekyll. Hosting is Google Cloud Buckets with CloudFlare in front of it for caching/CDN.

Absolutely thrilled to see the blog continue - definitely looking forward to RSS coming to play when you get to that point.

I think RSS should be present. Or at least atom, which… I really don’t understand the differences there. It’s been far, far too long since I’ve done real web dev.

However, it’s not “working” fully - I don’t have images linked properly in that (need to add the domain), and I don’t think I have it auto-filled in the main page headers. But it should work for “new post notification” level stuff right now, and is on my list of things to fix.

Ooh, neat.

Because I’m using Cloudflare, my bandwidth costs are actually far lower than they’d be directly serving off the Google Cloud buckets! Looks like about $0.04/GB vs the normal $0.10. Plus caching on Cloudflare. This will still end up being more expensive than my existing “totally free” hosting, but… eh. Whatever. Any heavy hits will be cached, and I can always move to a DO droplet if the hosting cost is more than a few dollars a month.