About this blog

Wed 22nd Aug 2018 / Last Updated: Sat 23rd Nov 2019 / Tags: #Meta

Keeping it simple

My goal for this blog is to keep everything really simple, so it's:

Therefore there is:

No PHP framework

This site is written in plain PHP, with no CMS or framework (e.g. WordPress or Laravel).

No CSS framework

I considered having no CSS like this, or very minimal CSS like this and this - but I settled on Gist-like simple styling. It's not exactly going to win any awards, but I like it.

No CSS build tool

For the same reasons, I'm not using any build tools such as webpack or Gulp. Size isn't an issue - even without minifying it, the CSS is under 4 KB gzipped (12 KB raw). I use a simple PHP method to add a hash to the URL so I can set long cache times.

No static site generator

While a static site is simple, cheap/free to host (e.g. with Netlify), and fast loading, it means I have to run a script (or development server) to build it, instead of just making changes and refreshing the page.

No JavaScript

I just don't need it for a site that's mostly text.

No tracking

There's no tracking - not even Google Analytics - because:

No database

Since everything is in static Markdown files, I don't need a database. There's no admin area - I either work on my development site with PhpStorm and deploy with Git, or use SSH + Vim, or WinSCP + Sublime Text or Typora, to edit files directly on the live server.

No CDN

Originally I used CloudFront as a CDN, but it got annoying having to wait for changes to propagate (even with a 60 second TTL).

Packages I am using

Despite not wanting to use a full framework, I am using a handful of packages: