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from hugo to bare html

published on 23 July 2021

So this website looks different now for a few days and that's because I gave up on hugo.

What annoyed me most about hugo (and probably any other somewhat feature-rich static site generator) was that the whole thing is just too complicated and cumbersome, I mean look at the directory structure, what is this??

$ ls blog/
archetypes  config.yml  data     netlify.toml  static
assets      content     layouts  resources     themes

I don't even know what the folders are for, like what is the difference between archetypes and layouts? It should be self-explanatory and I don't get it. This is not hugo's fault though, most SSGs probably have some sort of weird names/directories for their stuff, because they need to have some sort of structure to support their feature set in an efficient way.

However, I just want plain files and a structure that I can understand without reading 3 pages of documentation. Speaking of documentation, my experience when I searched for "hugo how to do XYZ" was eh, mediocre. Changing the RSS Feed to full-text was more complicated than it should be and I don't like to look up where to put specific files in order to have a 404 page or whatever.

And then there was this slight urge to change my hugo theme every few weeks or so, just because it was so easy to do, but that's more of a personal problem, I think.

So I pulled the plug and built a new site, heavily inspired by the CSS over at bettermotherfuckingwebsite and here we are: plain html files, one sane www directory, a hacky bash build script, but most importantly no more YAML! Besides, I like my hacked together bash scripts more than actually polished programs (see IKEA effect).

The only thing that still bugs me sometimes is that it's still hosted on Netlify, but it's just so convenient and I don't really want to spend 3 euros a month for a VPS that will host less than 500kb, so we're staying on Netlify for the time being.

Till I change my mind again ;)