Rebuilt the Blog Again

As the title suggests, and as any observer can tell, I have rebuilt this blog… again.

I tend to do this every year or two just to play with a new technologies. My first rewrite of my blog was in vanilla React via create-react-app, and I tried to use a few external libraries as possible. I do this mainly to learn the inner workings of a framework as well as to learn the various “isms” that come with a given framework choice. To date, I have been very happy with React and considere it my framework preference.

However, vanilla React requires one to build a lot of custom components. Components which I do not want to build. I hate building styles and templates, and I consider rebuilding, for example, a markdown processor to be a waste of my time. It has been done countless times, and I would be adding nothing new to that space.

So, my original React blog was very simple - a back-end which would authenticate me so that I could write and edit blog posts, and a front-end React app to consume that data. Very simple, very uncomplicated, and yet still much too compicated for a simple blog. I wasn’t aiming for Wordpress - I just like to write sometimes.

I came across Gatsby by way of Dan Abramov and Ryan Florence on Twitter, so I thought that it would be the next thing I tried when rewriting the blog. I have spent a collective of around 8 hours rebuilding the site in Gatsby, and I have to confess - it is everything I want.

My blog consists of a React application, which Gatsby ‘compiles’ into static html/css/js, which can be hosted somewhere for static service. I write these posts in Markdown, they are each individual files, I do not have to have a back-end, or credentials, or a database. These are just flat files that get transpiled into styled html.

This is the dream.