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Finally, a blogging setup I like

Native blog support recently landed in Material for MkDocs 🎉. This is huge, because technical documentation + blog can co-exist in the same place and actually look nice!

Kudos to Martin (@squidfunk on ) for the hard work and dedication to the project. I've been following the project for a while and it's been a pleasure to watch it grow. I've used my fair share of documentation frameworks and tools, but I keep coming back to this one because...

  1. Simple, with the right set of features focused on technical documentation
  2. Tooling that just works and looks nice out-of-the-box
  3. Easy to extend: add CSS, customize fonts, modify JS, etc.
  4. Sane navigation with options to tweak
  5. Fantastic documentation with a project Philosophy that resonates
  6. Finally, Native blog support

That last one (native blog support) was huge for me, for reasons I'll describe in the Writing section.

Here's the announcement tweet:


For a while I've been trying to write and post content. No monetization, no fancy javascript, just brewing ideas and jotting references for my(future)self and others with similar interests.

  • Ideas take time to develop and writing helps nurture those ideas. Think Digital Gardens
  • People can be amazing. You never know who might enjoy the content, learn from it or relate
  • I find myself referencing older content beyond just code snippets
  • English isn't my first, or second, language. Publishing content can hopefully improve my written communication and develop a skillset that I believe has fallen behind over the years

It finally occurred to me1 that existing efforts have failed because I spent more time playing (debugging) technology, tooling and platforms than thinking, writing and developing ideas.

From wordpress to jekyll to ghost to hugo,
  tumblr to medium to svbtle to,
    heroku to netlify to github pages,
      cloudflare pages, workers,
        cache optimization, image storage,
          CI/CD-flavor of the month,
            wasm, etc.

I can make the above work, but is this really the goal? Furthermore, the more customized the setup the harder it is to maintain over time.

The more fiddling offered by the technology, the more I'm tempted to do that instead of write. This is why the Blog plugin for Material for MkDocs was such a big deal for me.

Material for MkDocs keeps things simple, while offering just enough customization to make it feel your own.

Now, armed with a setup I'm happy with, I crave simplicity and focus over flexibility and extensibility.

I'll be spending more time writing, developing thoughts, jotting down interesting things and learning how to better express oneself in written form. Stay tuned friends.

  1. I kind-of knew it all along, but didn't want to admit it because it was just too much fun playing with technology!