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Hello Holger's Code, goodbye Wordpress!

Welcome to my new blog! Once again, it is time for an update. In the last 20 years, we have come a long way. It seems like yesterday I started blogging, but as this post will show, there is quite some history involved.

Started in Blog URL
2005 Holger's Thoughs on Delphi
2016 FlixEngineering LLC Blog
2023 Holger's Code

Blogspot got the ball rolling

I started in November 2005 with my first blog on called Holger's Thoughts on Delphi:

Screenshot Holger's first blog

It was a great, no-cost alternative to publish on the internet at the time. There, I published my first code snippets about Delphi and .NET development. Also, my first video tutorials that I created for Borland were announced there.

Over to WordPress

After a while, a new, more modern, blog engine was needed. I also had stopped blogging on a regular basis because after college, I took on other challenges that kept my Delphi work to a minimum. Well, at the end of 2016, I decided to focus on Delphi again and WordPress delivered a new, modern blog engine with lots of other content. My internet provider offered web space with WordPress enabled. Thus, I could move my blog as well as all my other web content over to WordPress. However, WordPress has become more about design and web pages than blogging technical content. It no longer was the right tool for my technical articles.

Screenshot Holger's second blog

GitHub is not only for source code

Recently, I noticed that more and more developers used GitHub Pages to present their thoughts on the Web. I noticed much better search capabilities, automatically generated table of contents, and - most important of all - extraordinary code formatting.

Thus, I jumped right into the world of page publication with GitHub. My first endeavor I created with Jekyll and a special template for technical documentation. I was already providing a lot of the features desired. All additional content for my sessions for the TMS Days in Belgium was created using Jekyll and Markdown. However, it lacked one important part of every modern developer website: a blog! I was not going to move over to a solution that would not allow me to publish posts on a regular basis and send updates to the community.

While reading the documentation for Vapor, a server-side development tool using Swift, I noticed it was created with a tool called MkDocs. Just like Jekyll it allows you to generate documentation content using Markdown. Even better, there was an open-source project called Material for MkDocs which extended the theme and added dozens of plugins with hundreds of customization options. That turned out to be the winning combination!

The workflow with Material for MkDocs

Thus, I was able to create a complete workflow using only free tooling:

graph LR
    A[Markdown] --> B[Material for MkDocs] --> C[GitHub] --> D[GitHub Pages]
A detailed list of the tools used:

  • Visual Studio Code
  • MkDocs
  • Material for MkDocs
  • Git
  • GitHub:
    • GitHub Repository
    • GitHub Pages
    • GitHub Workflows

All content is written in Markdown and each Git Push triggers a GitHub workflow which publishes the website. Really, after all these years, the best solution for a software developer.

More than a blog!

In addition to the blog, I am able to create tutorials and code snippet posts ("snacks") that are much easier to find as they are not hidden in a blog post.