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A blog in pure Org/Lisp (ambrevar.xyz)
55 points by Ambrevar 6 months ago | hide | past | web | favorite | 24 comments

Org-mode and Magit are the killer apps in emacs, for me.

I also extensively use org-mode to publish static sites and, well, organize essentially everything in work and my private life.

Learning org-mode is quite a valuable activity, in my opinion and experience.

Seems like quite the salvo of articles about org mode blogging lately.

Was thinking the same. Probably it doesn't make a particularly good image of Emacs/Lisp users.

I happen to tweak Emacs and write Clojure for a living, but thankfully I left the 'meta' trap behind years ago. My blog in on Medium.

Using https://tools.pingdom.com/ A random medium article

https://medium.com/s/story/the-rise-of-anti-notifications-6c... 1.1MB 51 requests

Parent article 26kb 4 requests.

Both actually load quickly on a fast connection particularly with adblock. Sadly not everyone has a fast connection.

Well I can spend my personal time in addressing edge cases for a tiny/occasional audience, or not. That was the point rather than defending the benefits of a specific platform.

Globally more people actually have crappy connections than not.

I'm curious why you refer to it as a trap. I personally use spacemacs and am very happy with it and I also use org mode casually, though do not consider myself an expert by any means. I do think I've experienced a similar "quantum leap" in productivity through my usage of VIM commands in an emacs environment though and am thankful for it every time I see a coworker painstakingly navigating through sublime text or something similar. Definitely not a trap for me. I imagine the productivity gains heralded by fans of org mode are similar in nature, so your idea that this focus on increased automation for personal productivity should be considered a "trap" is curious to me.

I do concede that org mode and lisp in general are brought up perhaps a bit too often here at HN seeing as they're not all that new though.

Emacs/Org aren't a trap per se, but if you find yourself using Org to blog about how you use Org for your blog, that seems a) funnily meta, and b) and indicator that you may have fallen in the 'trap' of investing far too much time in tooling, defeating the initial productivity intent.

Been there.

This is a fair point, but I don't think it applies here: the article is not so much about blog publishing with Org, but rather about 1) good practices and 2) hackable systems. Hacking here does not mean "crazy setup code just to get it to work", it means that I can add or customize (optional) features to my very needs.

Those two points are, I believe, not in very widespread usage among blog writers. I believe that 2) is responsible for 1). Unflexible configurations are too widespread in my opinion and it goes very much against what a programmer / hacker could aspire for.

In the end, the time I've spent on this was very short. Compared to the previous systems I've tried, it now makes for a much smoother publishing experience for me. The ultimate point is that I can tailor it to my exact needs instead of being endlessly frustrated with a non-hackable publishing system.

Seems a more than respectable POV.

My remark wasn't particularly aimed at you, simply it followed OP's (and also my) observation that "Org mode meta-blogging" is a category by itself :)

Well, productivity isn't everything, not everyone times all their activity in daily life and decides what to optimize for.

Maybe the author has that time to invest on tooling and doesn't care about how he would save a couple of hour by pushing a button on medium. Just because you did it unconsciously doesn't make it a trap.

Heh. Emacs/lisp users always make posts like: "look at this great [thing] to completely simplify [thing]" while simultaneously posting 82 steps to get it all working and automated :)

> Emacs/lisp users always make posts like: "look at this great [thing] to completely simplify [thing]" while simultaneously posting 82 steps to get it all working and automated :)

LOL. As a dyed-in-the-wool Emacs user for 20 years, I have to admit that this is true. On the other hand, it makes me happy that the flagship software project of Free software is still alive and kicking. Moreover, people have been making these comments about Emacs ever since the early 1980's.

These days, my .emacs is very minimal and on any new machine my standard setup can be manually recreated in five minutes, mostly using Customize.

There is no need for any complicated thing that has to be automatically downloaded and updated in-place from a source control management repository. This is especially important when, for example, you are working in a heavily fortified corporate network, where access to the outside Internet needs to go through strange proxies if it is allowed at all. And in these cases it's usually a stressful environment to begin with, so when your boss -- who doesn't know anything about programming and just wants to see results quickly, dammit -- asks you what you've been doing all day, you don't want to have to explain that you spent all your time figuring out how to get Emacs to work over the corporate proxy.

"Hacking" isn't pushing buttons on restrictive out-of-the-box solutions that someone else configured for you -- it's tinkering with things to make them work exactly how you want. Customizing editors and operating systems for one's own personal workflow is an enjoyable part of the process.

Yes, I enjoy it too. I did spend a lot of time doing this when I was a student and during my bachelor years.

Isn't that what so much of what programming is about? Invest all the work once up-front so that the next iterations are trivial?

Of course and it's fun! :)

I also often find myself going through all the steps in one of these articles then when I'm all ready to reap the results of success I move on to something else.

The trap is when you invest all the work up front.... and the next() call immediately returns StopIteration

Which seems to happen quite often when people customize their software, especially up-front, instead of over time. I suppose you could describe it as waterfall-style customization

This probably goes in waves for many people. When you just start, you're tempted to do all the clever little things you see online, and may end up being a bit lost.

Once you've learned a bit more, it becomes second nature to a) make the tweaks you need and b) filter out those you don't.

I, for one, enjoy the ability to adapt my editing/workflow as my needs evolve.

Something like 80% of software costs are maintenance.

It's not really the case here: I did not detail the steps for setting up Org-publish. I detailed some hacks (in the original sense) to extend it to suit my needs. Org-publish is really straightforward and works very well out of the box.

I really like two things from the author's system, but I will call out that neither of them require org-mode:

1) Being able to clone the author's blog repo and read it offline (just a bonus that it's already in org mode so no post-processing necessary). Is there a "lemme download everything by this author and read offline?" button on Medium?

2) The blog being in a public Git repository is nice for transparency.

> 2) The blog being in a public Git repository is nice for transparency.

The expectation that all your code is on a public repository (I blame GitHub for this) is one of the most horrifying developments in software engineering.


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