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Jekyll, MiddleMan or CMS for a blog site?

Ariff Munshi asked in General

Hi guys,

I've build quite a few production apps now with rails and I'm embarking on my latest project which is a niche blog site. I guess going with rails is a bit of an overkill with this one so I'm looking at some of the other options out there.

For static blog sites, Jekyll and Middleman seems to be leading the pack. Any advise from anyone who have tried either of this? For now it's a blog with info articles and a tagging and search system but I'm also considering to add forums and guest posting if there is enough viewership.

Besides these 2, has anyone worked with CMS systems like Radiant etc. How does it compare to just using Rails directly. I've looked at some of these but will at the setup involved, I end up just using Rails.

Any advice from experience would be great. Thanks!


I use Jekyll a lot, its fantastic! I would advise using it if its a simple blog or site which does not need users to login and have accounts. If you need comments on your articles just use Disqus. Its pretty expandable!

Why? Well, you're not reliant on a DB so no slow down there, or additional failure point. Jekyll also uses markdown, which means you get nice HTML generated and dont have to worry about rouge styles getting in there and messing hings up.

As a starting point you could start with a Jekyll site, and the update it to somthing more later if you feel the site is growing well. - You can add a forum as a subdomain, and you can even have guest posting too.


Thanks Alan for the tip! Yea Jekyll looks great especially with MD. Didn't know about the guest post feature. Will definitely look into it!


For your guest post i would simply use the front matter. The following example is from a post off my site.

layout:         default
title:          Setting up Rails and Jekyll (Part 1)
type:           post
navigation:     false

date:           2016-10-14
excerpt:        In part 1 we are going to get Rails setup, and test our install.
categories:     rails jekyll setup guide
image:          articles/setting-up-rails-and-jekyll/setting-up-rails.png
details:        false

author:         Alan Reid
bio:            I'm a freelance designer/developer who enjoys creating beautiful and standard compliant solutions for my clients from all around the world.

All you would need to do is change the author and bio and your done. Saves messing around too much.

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