Building an Archive of My First Blog

18 Feb 2024 | ~3 minute read

My first ever blog was hosted on Blogger, and Google loves to delete shit, so I've decided to replicate that site and host it myself.

I first started blogging back in 2011, but back then I didn't know much about web design or hosting (I still don't!), so I decided to use Google's Blogger platform for My First BlogTM.

In all honestly, it worked really well and allowed my to find my feet with this blogging lark, but I eventually moved on from Blogger and that fledgling site of mine fell to the sands of time.

Or so I thought...

When I wrote about my history with blogging, I decided to take a trip down memory lane and see if my little Blogger site was still there. It bloody was, and I was so happy.

A couple of years later, when I was writing about the design history of this site, I re-visited my little Blogger site. It was still there, but most of the images were broken. I assume Google must have changed something over the years to do that, as I hadn't deleted anything.

Thinking it was miraculous that the site was still alive, and Google hadn't actually killed Blogger yet (because we all know they like to kill shit), I decided I'd replicate the site as best I can and host it myself.

Building the archive

Back in 2022, when I first started building this archive, I decided to go with good old HTML and CSS. That way it should stand the test of time. However, doing things like pagination, or making small changes to things like the nav menu or the footer, were proving to be a pain in the arse.

So about a year ago I decided to start again, with Jekyll. With a spare 10 minutes here and there, I've finally managed to finish the Jingi Blog Archive and here's what it looks like:

The new Jingi Blog archive site

If we compare that to how the original site looked, I think it's pretty close. Navigating around it's around 95% the same, I'd say. So although it's not perfect, it's close enough to get a good idea for the feeling of the site:

The original Jingi Blog

Replacing the images

The vast majority of the images on the site were broken. I tried to get them from the Internet Archive, but they were broken there too.

So I had to painstakingly go through all the post on the site (there were only 39 of them, so not too bad), read the post, understand the context, then hunt all over the internet for an image that was close to what I originally had.

There's lot of screen shots of my systems from when I was running Linux, back in 2011, that have gone forever. That's a real shame, and so this was the impetus to get this archive done. It's bad enough that those images are gone; I don't want my (admittedly really bad) early writing to go too.

Final thoughts

I owned another blog, that replaced "Jingi Blog", and I'm thinking about doing something similar with that site. We will see though, as that one had hundreds of posts and was far more complicated, so that will take a lot of effort.

If you want to have a peruse of my first blog from all those years ago, here's a link to the new archive:

Read the Jingi Blog Archive →

← The one before
Fat Boy at 40 - Update 05

Up next →
Son of the Black Sword

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