For a while now I've been eyeing up Hugo in favor of replacing my existing Ghost blog. I made the switch this weekend and I couldn't be happier with the new setup. I wouldn't say that Ghost is a bad platform, I have no qualms with it, but Hugo definitely better suites my needs.
Using Vim to write content
This is a big win for me. I don't need to have a web interface for writing markdown, I already have everything in my favorite editor. This is a big win for me in terms of productivity since this means I can quickly stomp out a post while I'm already on the command line, where most of my day is spent already. I've already come across the plug vimwiki to keep personal documentation on all kinds of things for myself so when I found out that I could have a blog publishing framework that was along the same lines, I was sold.
Hugo is written in Go and it is fast
I'm a big fan on go binaries. This means I don't have to install whole runtime environments on a machine just to get the blog going, just download an executable and you are good to go. I'm very picky at keeping my machines clean. Also it's fast. I've thought of using other static website engines like Jekyll but I wasn't going to make the jump quiet yet, I wasn't convinced. Then I read Julia Evans post about Switching to Hugo and when I saw how much faster she reported the site generation, I knew I wanted to make the jump to Hugo.
Static files are easier to host
No daemons, no port forwarding, no databases, no runtimes, no more headaches. All I do now is rsync everything over and it's done. The more time I spend with technology the more I just want everything to be simple (read old man syndrome). I don't want to spin up a blog in a technology I barely use and constantly not remember where everything is. A blog is a simple application, Hugo is a simple application. All I had to do was make sure there was a vhost in the webserver. When it comes to most anything in my programming world, I am always a big fan of flat files. Simple, readable, accessible flat files.
Hugo was easy to setup
The setup of the whole blog was effortless. I had a theme installed and a sample blog post ready to go in under 2 minutes Amazing! This again goes back to keeping things simples. I spent some more time reading through documentation and trying to figure out Hugo in-depth but it wasn't necessary. The longest part for me was migrating data, which I did by hand because I wanted to go over the older posts and make sure things were still at least semi relevant. Creating New posts is easy, running the server is easy, and I can do everything I need right in the terminal.
Stoked! Happy! Fun! Hugo's website says “Make the Web Fun Again” and I for one am sold on it. I couldn't be happier with my new setup and I hope that if you are reading this and thinking about whether to make the leap or not that you found some convincing arguments to help!