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Weeknotes (2023 week 10)

FeinCMS bugs

FeinCMS is really stable (since there isn’t much going on) but this week a Django upgrade surfaced bugs in the datepublisher extension. The extension uses a granular_now utility to determine if a page should be shown or not; the time is rounded to a 5-minute boundary which makes some sorts of caching more effective.

On one hand it’s a bit sad that activity on the project has practically ground to a halt, on the other hand it’s great that the project requires practically no changes when a new version of Django is released. Stability is awesome.

15 years of using GitHub

I used Subversion and darcs for probably not much more than a year each before discovering Git probably some time in spring 2006. It was a very archaic version with a much worse CLI than today. Everything was archaic, not just the CLI itself but also the repository browsers and the various web UIs. But everything was also very interesting to me. I especially found the emphasis on clean data structures instead of code very inspiring. And here we are, basically all the tools have been rewritten but the commits from back then are still around.

Yesterday marks the 15 anniversary of my GitHub account. I was invited to join the private beta. GitHub was probably the first Git-related tool I encountered which actually looked nice. Hard to believe that so much time has passed.

(No, I don’t find Git hard to use. And I have basically stopped losing work since I started using Git, something which has happened too often before.)

Static Site generation

I played around with several static site generators to replace my blogging software. I checked out several generators:

  • Pelican looks interesting because it uses Python and Jinja2 which should make it easier to reuse the Django templates (or so I thought)
  • Hugo seems to be very widely used and looks like a good idea to bet on

This site runs on Django and I’m using a markdown editor based on CodeMirror in the admin. I do like CodeMirror a lot but I would like it even more if I could use neovim in the console. I know that vim bindings for CodeMirror exist, but I didn’t have a good experience with the vim bindings for VisualStudio Code so I’m wary (and too lazy).

The problem with all those generators are that they have different ideas for how to structure the URLs and RSS/Atom feeds. I have since learned the reason why Pelican doesn’t use the permalink of posts as their Atom ID (from the feedgenerator module) but I’m just not convinced that flooding aggregators with old posts is a net benefit to everyone. Yes, it’s only once but…

Of course I’m now thinking about writing my own static site generator, for fun.

Thanks, Tim

I have been coworking with Tim to write more. Tim and I have been maintaining the django-debug-toolbar together in the last few years and have been pairing up every one or two weeks to write together (mostly) in silence as described by Jacob Kaplan-Moss in his blog entry a few times. Today I really needed the additional motivation brought by committing to work together. If not for this arrangement I would probably have skipped it and who knows if I had managed to restart the weeknotes streak next week on my own…!