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The Way Is The Goal

Category: Tech (page 1 of 2)

Meanwhile we still write

It is passed time to update this blog, and I might just have found the way to do this! I finally managed to update this blog simply by using an editor on my laptop, and using some commands afterwards. Mind you, this ain’t some static site generator, this is a WordPress installation, you know the world’s most used CMS but also somewhat the most annoying. Well, WordPress just got somewhat easier and nicer – thanks to this great hack.

So what is happening? Well I was busy today designing a workflow for my friend Jorge who is going to write the long due moneyless-book. I really needed to have a workflow that would be based on markdown file-editing, while using a git repository so I could give frequent feedback. And with the markdown files we could easily generate html and pdf files when we want them.

Writing a book means you don’t want to end up with one superlarge file in some word-processor. This would easily become a big cumbersome, especially if you want to share and collaborate with others. Therefore, you really want to have e.g. an outline of sections in a sidebar, collapsible content, a build-in file browser, and a nice user interface that is build to make you type.

Best markdown editor ever

And while doing all that I fell in love with the editor I choose, which is Typora. This editor seems to be a great, uhm, ~~wonderful~~ amazing markdown editor (and mind you, I never use this oversaturated word ‘amazing’). This is something I have been looking for since like… f-o-r-e-v-e-r. And not only it has a beautiful interface, it actually makes me want to write.

While designing the new workflow for the book, it made me think what if I can finally realize my personal web-editing dream? This dream is simple: To edit all posts and pages simply through my own personal editor of choice, and not through a bloated webinterfaces (plus without migrating my 20+ websites to a different cms such as Hugo or Grav). Realizing this dream would finally make my professional work much easier again and, above all, more fun!

So I searched and found some new plugins that sync wordpress posts and pages with git repositorities. So that’s it. I finally do not have visit the website admin interface anymore, any longer. I just pull the content to my local machine, I write, and the pull. 1 second later the website has been updated. What’s only missing now, is an automatic push upon saving the document.

So who knows I might just keep on going and add new nonsensical stuff here 🙂

Finding The Right Editor For Me

Writing in Emacs – Finding The Right Editor For Me.

Why would I write in Emacs? I tried Vi and liked it but it doesn’t suit me as well for the purpose of just writing. I find it difficult that in order to navigate the text I have to leave the input or text mode. After having used Vi multiple times I still haven’t gotten the hang of it. It’s just not friendly enough to me.

So at the same time this is also a good oportunity to see what else is there for me (except nano, haha). I guess Emacs is more to my liking. Although it also comes with disadvantages, it is less hard to just start with it. Vi is great but I guess not for me (at this point at least). Emacs gives me a better touch and feel. Besides it’s also slightly more intuitive to the way I use my machine.

Though, I am just at the start of this. I still don’t even know how to use search. Learning the vi keybindings is a great benefit though, as you learn how you can navigate with one hand only. And you don’t have to use the ctrl-button so much as in Emacs. Which is a great benefit (think emacs pinky). But that benefit comes with a cost: the need to leave the text input mode in order to navigate.

So why wouldn’t I use a GUI-like editor, such as Gedit for example – which is a great application and also has syntax highlighting. That’s simply because I don’t want to leave the command-line. I’d like to hang in there as much as I can, simply because once you get it, it’s more fun and efficient than having so many windows open.

As with everything, I will be learning as I go. There is good things about both editors and it’s just about using either of them to see which will stick with me. I also should be following up more on the vimtutorial more than what I’ve done so far to find out which one really is better for me.

Writing in Markdown

It’s just crazy; for so long I have been editing WordPress posts in silly html and only now I discover there is also a great Markdown plugin. Markdown gives a really easy method to control the output of your text. It really is very easy.

The first time I encountered a type of markdown is when I started editing Wikipedia articles in 2001. The Wikimedia syntax is also fairly easy and a lot easier and cleaner to edit text with then plain html. Markdown is a different syntax that came around some years later and is even easier.

I started writing in Markdown when I discovered Jekyll, a static site generator. After that I was missing it badly in a WordPress environment. But now, together with the ability to add and edit posts through the command-line, I can finally do away with the admin interface of WordPress and I can easily ignore my browsers. Yeah!

Update: After saving this post, I notice that wp-cli is not saving it as markdown, maybe that’s a bug? Need to investigate. Also the markdown syntax for linking doesn’t work as expected.

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