Posts written in October 2016.

  • Published on
    3 min read

    I Ain't Afraid Of No Ghost

    As I have been writing the last few blog posts, I've been getting the case of "twitchy feet" during the writing process. I normally get "twitchy feet" when frustrated or annoyed by things in my life that I feel could be done easier. In this case, my site has started to frustrate me and felt that adding new posts became a chore.

    Over the 10 years (has it really been this long!?) owning and maintaining this site, it's started to become a bit of the beast from the initial outset. I've jumped from platform to platform based on my needs at the time:

    • Wordpress (2006)
    • BlogEngine (2007 to 2012)
    • Kentico (2012 to present)

    I feel at the grand old age of 31, I need a platform that nurtures my writing creativity without having to worry about general maintainance and somewhat restrictive editorial functionality. Ever since I tasted the pure nectar that is Markdown, my writing speed has gone through the roof and love having full control through the simplistic editing interface - Markdown is the furture!

    I am a certified Kentico Developer (you may have got that impression from my vast posts on the platform) and specifically chose Kentico CMS because it gave me the full flexibility to build the site how I wanted. As great as the platform is, I've come to the conclusion that this site will never grow to be anything more than one thing: a blog. So I want to down-size like a person getting on in his years and move to a smaller house.

    Enter Ghost...


    The Ghost platform has garnered a lot of traction over the years ever since its concept in 2012. I've been keeping an eye on it over the years and never really gave the platform much thought until I noticed quite a few popular bloggers making the move and experiencing the lightening fast performance. This is possibly down to the blogger hosting their instance on Ghost Pro. Could be wrong. I am planning on going down the Ghost Pro hosting route and get everything setup by the very nice people behind the scenes at Ghost HQ, who will lovingly host and look after my site.

    I opened up a dialog on Twitter to Ghost who were very kind in alleviating my initial migration worries:

    @SurinderBhomra We can upload images for you, if you send the upload directory in the format Ghost uses, i.e. /content/images/yyyy/mm/image-name
    — Ghost (@TryGhost) October 7, 2016

    @SurinderBhomra We can help with the redirects if you're coming over to Ghost(Pro). :)
    — Ghost (@TryGhost) October 6, 2016

    The only thing I will have to get over, which Ghost will not be able to help me with is getting over the mindset that I will not be able to to tinker around with my site to the full extent as I do now. But this isn't necessarily a bad thing and will give me the opportunity to concentrate more on writing quality content. I just hate the thought of restricting myself.

    Ghost has put a framework in place that no other platform has done so well - giving power to write content anywhere:

    • Desktop browser
    • Mobile browser
    • Desktop application

    Looks like Ghost lives up to its main selling point:

    An open source blogging platform which makes writing pleasurable and publishing simple.

    What I also love is the SEO optimisation out-of-the-box. God knows how many hours I've spent trying to get my site SEO friendly, not only from an search indexing standpoint, but a social sharing standpoint too with all the open graph tags built-in. No need for extra plugins or development from a code perspective.

    Whats Next?

    As it currently stands, I am evaluating Ghost through their 14 day trial and need to send an email to their support team before I make a confirmed decision to move. I like what I am seeing to far. Just need to get the time to put a migration process in place to move the 200 posts on this site. Eek!

    Ghost is definitely not as scary as I once thought. Cue Ray Parker Jr...

  • Published on
    2 min read

    The Pursuit Of Happiness

    So it's finally come to this... A point in my life where I'm questioning what have I done to get to this place I currently find myself standing, wanting to make sense of an emotion that was so naturally built into my being from day one. But now, I am not too sure if it exists or ever did exist.

    The Sad Clown

    Before you read any further, I thought I just clarify you won't be finding me talking about the performance of Will and Jayden Smith in the film: The Pursuit of Happiness. The title of the film and this post is purely coincidental.

    This year has been to what I can only describe as: turbulent. The complete opposite to what it should have been. It was going to be a year of pastures new. A seed of great things to come was planted, watered on a daily basis and nurtured to flourish into the start of something quite beautiful. Alas, like the state of my lawn it’s very much the case where no matter how much hard graft is invested to transforming something withered to greener pastures, it morphs back to its original state as nature intended. Some things cannot be changed.

    Why do I write this? That I do not know. Maybe writing my inner thoughts into words to stare back at me in its raw unforgiving form is the only way to come to terms with what I am facing. Let's call it: therapy.

    I look at my life and think I am a lucky person. I have nothing to complain about, yet I feel something missing. As one day ends and another begins, I find myself wondering what I am trying to accomplish and questioning if I am doing everything in my power remedy the wounds still open from earlier this year. Honest answer: probably not. Yesterday, I thought about what Friedrich Nietzsche said:

    If you stare into the abyss, the abyss stares back at you.

    By not confronting the wounds of yesterday, I'm consumed by being reminded of the painful events that has wedged itself deep into my hippocampus. Slowly eroding away my old self. But there is just enough for the small part of me that still exists to warn me that I am slowly edging mentally to the point of no return. So I am here writing this very post.

    If I don't start the healing process now, what I fear the most may come into fruition - others around me will notice the gaping hole where my left ventricle used to be. I have come to the conclusion that I'm not so good at being the great pretender over a considerable duration of time.

    With every letter I type I slowly regain consciousness and become self aware once again, coming to the realisation that this year has changed me. No doubt about that. But I'm stronger for it.

    If a human being thoughts and emotions is truly boundless, then it's in our nature to have the capacity to forgive, forget and learn. By doing this, I can only hope the resulting outcome will be... happiness. In time this will happen. As they say "time is a great healer". I take great comfort in that.