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4 Steps to a Blog System

Posted by Tim Blonski on

  1. Choose a blogging engine
    We chose between Jeckyll and Middleman. There are a plethora of options available, and it’s important to choose what best suits your needs. We narrowed our final decision down between Middleman and Jekyll (both great) and ultimately chose to go with Middleman. Some key reasons:

    • It uses something very similar to the Rails asset pipeline so we wouldn’t have to use liquid templates (we use .erb)
    • It is easy to deploy (also because it is similar to Rails)
  2. Choose your layout and font
    The developers who built this blog are not designers (or even very good developers), so take this section with a grain of salt. Layout, font, header, and footer are basically the only design elements to focus on. Anything else is probably overkill. The design should reflect your brand and values; when in doubt, keep it simple. Great examples can be found at Basecamp blog and Thoughtbot blog.

  3. Choose a name, host, establish a DNS and deploy process flow
    We host on Github Pages as it is super simple to host right from our Github repo for the blog. You should choose a name for your blog; not ‘’. Ideally, it should come from some shared experience. At Fundbase, we measure our success by the size of our (invisible) yacht. As far as deploy process, we keep it as simple as possible so it can be followed by technical and non-technical folks alike and easily articulated on the README. The process for publishing a post is much like the process for developing any feature branch on Github:

    • Clone the repo
    • Check out a feature branch to write your post
    • Start the middleman server and run the post generator command (see the Middleman docs for more detail)
    • Push to your remote branch
    • Create a pull request to master when your post is composed and ready to be published
    • Ask for a review - one or more people of your choosing provide feedback on your post
    • Merge the PR and deploy the master branch
  4. Add Support
    None of these are needed but encourage a much richer blog:

    • Twitter account dedicated to posting about and promoting your blog(checkout @FundbaseTech).
    • RSS feed
    • Comments (because who doesn’t want another avenue for people to express their opinions?)

Tim Blonski

Tim is a Fullstack developer at Fundbase.