Squick is the evolution of ZAP. While working on ZAP I realised that trying to cram every single thing I might want to do with my website into a general-purpose static site generator is not only too much work, but also no fun at all. There are a few things that I was interested in doing differently (at least from the static site generators I’ve found) and many things that I was interested in doing exactly the same as everyone else.
Making ZAP flexible enough would require a plugin system, which takes quite a bit of work to get right. Making those plugins means wrangling other people’s software (like sass compilers, git, elasticsearch, etc.) which is a pain. So, instead of fighting with other people’s software, I decided to build on other people’s software, by making a simple node module that renders markdown files with templates in a way that is very easy to integrate into gulp. Squick is the result. The templates are rendered (asynchronously) using dust. This website is now built with Squick, along with the following gulp plugins:
- gulp-sass: to compile the stylesheets
- gulp-notify: to pop up desktop notifications when continuous, background builds finish or fail
- gulp-connect: to provide a livereload-enabled webserver
- gulp-gh-pages to automate deploying to GitHub pages
- gulp-indexify: to turn
Overall, I’m very happy with this new system and the workflow it enables!