I’m coming clean: I’ve been writing on other blogs. It’s not that I don’t love this WordPress site I built as a college freshman with a homepage carousel and fixed-width containers, but some side projects presented opportunities to try generating websites with Jekyll and Yeoman.
I was inspired to start a datablog about about the legendary bearded pitcher Brian Wilson after reading Analyzing Baseball Data with R
and wanted a website framework that would allow me to publish easily but also facilitate sharing the R code I used in my analysis.
Jekyll and GitHub
fit my situation because I could deploy scripts and blogs to the same place. I suppose I could have used iPython notebooks or Jeremy Singer-Vine’s Reporter
to embed my code more seamlessly in posts, but for now I link to the repo.
I wanted to use the yeoman Backbone
generator to get running with a single-page site that used my work examples as data models but into command-line setup struggles. After 15 frustrating minutes, I found my Node needed an update.
My first go with Yeoman wasn’t as snappy as I hoped, and my time allotment broke down like this:
- updating node: 1 hour
- fighting backbone models: 1/2 hour
- writing my resume as json: 2 hours
- design: 1/2 hour
- deployment: 1/2 hour
Using Backbone to treat my resume as models meant I had to write my resume and work samples as json. I was willing to put up with the hassle because for some reason I like entering structured data by hand, but this is why lots of people have worked on ways to convert spreadsheets or google docs to structured data and I could have used those tools.
Deploying my yeoman-generated portfolio site was bittersweet as it was only once I put it on the interwebs that I realized the generator had included some libraries that broke Backbone on Internet Explorer. The generated site came with modernizr and had fallbacks to help IE users, but I would have rather handled IE myself. I could pick through the yeoman generator, find what breaks my site on IE and remove it, but I’m lazy.
Give me the grid
You gotta have a responsive grid. Yeoman generators come with one, Sass tools like Bourbon Neat
can give you one. However in recent collaborations with my boy Frank Bi
, we’ve used good ol’ Bootstrap
since we both understand CSS and want avoid grunt/compiling Sass.