Open Source

Michael E. Kirkpatrick ·

When I first heard about open source software and GitHub, I thought it was a neat idea but I had no idea how I could contribute. When I first started working on Campus Loop, I created a GitHub account but didn’t do anything with it. Then I was recently listening to the Accidental Tech Podcast where the hosts were talking about open source projects and thought: I can do that. What I realized is that I can open source this blog; better said, I can put the code I use to power the blog into the open source community.

So I did. I’ve open sourced the code powering this blog under the project name Long Beach. This is my first foray into the open source community. As I make updates to the blogging engine, I’ll add commits to the project.

I realize there are lots of great blogging platforms out there including Wordpress, Squarespace, Medium, etc. But for me, this project is more about the exercise of programming than it is about building a new platform. I love being able to tweak anything and everything about a website, and writing my own blogging engine allows me to do that.

I think this blog has a few neat features that make it different from others. Specifically, I designed it to have more attribution information for posted links. I wanted to give credit to the author and source of the original post, attached as metadata, in addition to adding a link. So you will find that each post lists the author, and if it’s an external link, the source and the link. You can then browse the blog by source and author.

I’m proud of the styling of the site as well. It’s a responsive design that I think looks great on mobile devices and on desktops.

If you’d like to dig into the code or see what kinds of languages and technologies I’m using, check out the Long Beach project page on GitHub. And if you see something that can be improved, let me know.