# Request: resource to writing a first blog post

Hi All,

I recall from previous renditions of the course it is common for students to write blog posts detailing their successes in applying these tools and techniques and sharing them on the forums. I was wondering if anyone could point me (and others who don’t have experience with this) at some resource(s) on getting started and/or experiences you have had with platforms or approaches. As an example, I was looking at something like the process detailed here:

But was wondering if it’s worth the trouble with the set up presented (there’s quite a bit) or if there is some easier/faster method people like to use (as the post is quite old). Thanks in advance!

Max

I just started with Jekyll and GitHub pages, here is the repo with an example:

Then your blog will be available as <username>.github.io. You can use your own domain name if you have a DNS record. The master branch of your repo will be rendered as an online page.

Nothing fancy so far but not that bad, I would say =) Or you can go with the Medium.

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Thanks, I will check it out!

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What do you suggest doing for getting feedback on your write up from a smaller group of people before going broad? (like on Medium). Can one start a forums.fast.ai thread with your rough draft, or is that bad etiquette?

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Maybe you can consider using the nikola static website generator.
What’s nice about it is that it natively supports jupyter notebooks. This means that you can just write a post as a jupyter notebook and don’t need to worry about manually converting it to another format. Also Nikola itself is written in python, so that makes it a bit easier to understand what it actually does.
I’m using it myself to start blogging as well.

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As far as I know, Medium allows sharing​ drafts before publishing.

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It’s a splendid idea.

We highly recommend Medium for getting started with blogging. There are some great curated “magazines” that the best work can be picked up by.

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I just started with Jekyll and Github but your site looks awesome by comparison to my basic attempt! Did you design it yourself?

Agree, it is a great platform. I was trying LinkedIn Publishing also, and the experience was far away from desired. Also I really Medium’s visual style.

Thank you for the appreciation! =) Yes, actually, I’ve started from scratch and trying to come up with something more or less pleasant for a reader because I wanted to practice my CSS/JS skills as well.

I guess it is perfectly fine to start with any of the pre-built templates, most of them look quite pretty!

I also wanted to ask: I recall you mentioning that any blog posts cannot refer to the videos and must be understandable on their own (as the videos are not available to public). To clarify: is it okay if we use the new fastai version 1 in our code in the post, or is that being kept under wraps as well for now? Thanks in advance.

Don’t forget to share your blog posts here!:

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Hi @devforfu - I have just updated my site to use the basis of your repo, I thought I should notify you. I really like your layout and styles, I hope this is okay - please let me know if not. You can see it here.

Thanks,

Mark

Cool! I am glad that the layout was helpful. I would highly appreciate if you could put a reference somewhere to the original repo if it doesn’t bother your Probably one day I or someone else can create a Jekyll template with this scheme!

Yes of course! I have added a link to your repo in my footer which is on each page - I hope this is okay. I’m not sure what plans you have to update it (I know nothing about web development so won’t be doing too much with it) but I certainly think it is a great format for a technical personal site!

Just a note, when I initially added my posts the inline mathjax wasn’t rendering so I added a little snippet to fix this - not sure if this is something you have noticed (could just be me being a numpty).

Thanks again.

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No worries, Mark, glad to help!

Not sure if I had any issues with MathJax but thank you for the ​warning, I’ll check on my side

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Hi @devforfu - just an update on this. The site works great but I can’t seem to format text as bold for some reason using the double ** as usual and further \textbf{} which used to format mathjax to bold no longer works.

Appreciate you don’t want to be responsible for answering my questions on this (!) but just wondered if you knew off the top of your head what could be causing the issue?

Thanks,

Mark

Hi Mark!

Sure, not a problem! Actually, I didn’t have such an error. I am using **bold text** statements to highlight text in bold.

You could open a developer’s console in your browser to see if there are any errors during the rendering process. I think that if you use a plain Jekyll, it should render bold text with starts.

Otherwise, you could try <strong></strong> but that’s rather a cumbersome solution if nothing else helps.

How bizarre, about 50% of the time **bold text** works for me (usually at the start of a bullet point), other times not. <strong></strong> doesn’t work either…

The only warning I see in the developer console relates to a mathjax out of date warning but I’m not sure that’s the issue.

Though for reference the warning is (I’ve tried updating per advice here but doesn’t seem to work so far):

WARNING: cdn.mathjax.org has been retired. Check https://www.mathjax.org/cdn-shutting-down/ for migration tips.