Lyndsy Simon

Development | Humor | Internet Marketing | Miscellany | Politics

Personal Renewal

If you've visited my site before, you'll undoubtably notice that the look has changed dramatically. This is not merely a new theme, but a complete reinvention.

My site started out running Wordpress, with an inexpensive commercial theme. That worked great for me for a while, as I set to build a branded personal image as an expert in the Interet Marketing community. After a while, I realized that I really didn't have the passionate to write about my IM experiences on a regular enough basis to justify building my image around it, so I switched to the Wordpress default Twenty Eleven theme.

I really liked (and still like) Twenty Eleven. In fact, I still have commercial sites using the template, such as Photography Basics 101. The theme is fairly minimal without being extreme, allows a high degree of customization, and has actually performed very well in terms of conversion rate. Best of all, it's incredibly easy to update and I never have to worry about the theme designer not keeping up with with it. If Twenty Eleven doesn't get updated and hasn't been replaced, then I'll be too busy looking for a viable replacement to Wordpress to mourn for the theme.

New Site

My new site was more complex to set up, but is refreshingly simple to maintain. It's statically generated using Pelican, which is a Python module designed for blogging. Both the source I use to build the site and the resultant markup are hosted on Github.

Best yet, this site itself is hosted on Github, using Github Pages. No server administration headache or transfer protocol to deal with. I use two tools for this site: Sublime Text 2 for writing content (in Markdown or ReST, no less), and Git for versioning and deployment.

It's very refreshing to be able to go from hacking on a Python project to writing a blog post without changing tools. This sort of shared toolchain is something that I'm cultivating in my life right now, in an attempt to embed myself more fully in the Open-Source Software Movement and the Python community in particular.

If this concept is sound, I hope you'll see more of this type of post from me, just running down what I'm working on and why. I intend to make this site a sort of public accountability tool, forcing me to harness the passion I feel but find so difficult to express in my daily actions. If I can put my thoughts down in writing where others can read them, perhaps I can preserve enough of the initial excitement associated with them to turn them into something that I can offer to the community with the pride of a man who has built something to be proud of.