I’ve been blogging off-and-on for a few years. My first post, in December 2011, was on WordPress.com. I then briefly tried Tumblr, before settling on this self-hosted WordPress site. It gave me the flexibility I wanted, and tied in quite nicely with projects like BlueLightCamp which also uses WordPress for its web site.
The Day job
As part of my day job I’m leading the Hampshire Hub project on behalf of twenty or so partners. We developed the original ‘thinking aloud’ site using WordPress and have progressed through ‘prototype’ to what we’re currently referring to as ‘interim’.
Whizzy new data store
We just appointed Swirrl to deliver the next phase which will involve a whizzy new data store built on linked data. As part of the move to the new platform it’s possible we’ll be using a different blogging product. Whilst not decided for certain yet, it’s looking likely that’ll be Ghost. If you’ve not heard of Ghost before, it’s an open source software project which, according to its web site, is:
Free to use, free to modify, free to share, free to redistribute. You can do anything you like with the software, without legal restriction. When you download a copy of Ghost, you own it. It’s completely yours.
This all sounds jolly good, and very much in line with Hampshire Hub’s principles of openness and re-use. Besides which, I’m enjoying learning something new.
Ghost uses Markdown which I haven’t really used before. My first impression was that it’s not as intuitive as WordPress, but I’ve actually warmed to it quite quickly. There are loads of cheat sheets like the example on the right, shared by Designshack, which are really handy. If I give up the Ghost (sorry) then I can simply copy my posts back in to WordPress, which also supports Markdown (via a plug-in).
My Ghostly experiment coincides with me enabling Auto-Backup on Google Plus. Auto-Backup is automatically saving a copy of all my photos – on all my connected devices – to folders on Google Plus.
Google Plus also has a feature called “autoawesome” which – amongst other things – attempts to stitch together photos it recognises as being part of a sequence. Viewed individually ‘autoawesomes’ can be quite impressive. Viewed en-masse they can be incredibly distracting, as you can see from this small selection in the video below.
I’m therefore including just one example at the end of this post.
If you’re interested in seeing some of my Ghost written ‘auto-awesomed’ wildlife pics, they’re over on my Ghost blog.