It's time for some Inside Baseball about schof.org. There haven't been too many change to the site that most people noticed, but I've made some significant changes under-the-hood, and I thought I'd take a moment to speak about them, and also about the tools I use to make this website.
This is a WordPress blog, hosted on WPEngine.com. I still recommend WPEngine.com[1. I'm a WPEngine.com affiliate, so I get paid if you click that link and subscribe.] I'm a big fan of WordPress as a blogging tool -- it's a large enough ecosystem that you've got every tool you could possibly imagine, and it's flexible enough to do just about anything. Sure, a lot of people complain about WordPress, but I think it's good enough for the vast majority of uses.
I recently switched from the (free) Ascetica theme to the (paid) Standard Theme. So far I'm a big fan of the Standard Theme. I like the look, and it's been fairly simple to customize it to suit my needs.
I use the following plugins:
- Akismet -- automatically put spam comments in a spam folder. Without this plugin it would not be possible for most blogs to have comments. In a few days I have a few hundred spam comments that Akismet has kept me from having to deal with. So far I've never had a false positive, although there have been a few false negatives (spam comments that found their way through the filter).
- BWP Google XML Sitemaps -- Generates an XML Sitemap that tells Google and other search engines about the pages on this blog. Useful to get your blog pages listed in search engines.
- FD Footnotes -- Gives me the footnotes I use on this site.[2. I love footnotes.]
- Jetpack by WordPress.com -- Jetpack is a multi-purpose collection of plugins published by the same guys who created WordPress. I use it primarily for the equation support (letting me put nicely-formatted equations on the site) and because it provides statistics about user visits.
- Post Revision Display -- This is the most important plugin on the site. If I modify a post or page after it's been published, Post Revision Display puts that information at the bottom of the page, and lets you see whatever changes I've made. I consider this plugin vital to the credibility of this site. I stand by the content I publish, and if I get something wrong, you'll be able to see that I've fixed it, and what my original mistake was.
- WP-Syntax -- Gives me nicely-formatted output when I put some computer source code in a post. I haven't been using this much lately, but since I've been investigating using Python for financial analysis, it may get more use in the future.
I'm also using Google Analytics to give me a little more data than Jetpack does about how people use the site, and I'm running a single Google Ad on each page to help offset the cost of running the site.