AI News, Python Bytes

Your own hosted blog, the easy, free, open way (even if you're not a computer expert)

This post introduces fast_template, the easiest way to create your own hosted blog.

It requires no coding, no use of the command line, and supports custom themes and even your custom domain (which is entirely optional).

Rachel Thomas, co-founder of fast.ai, said it best in her article Why you (yes, you) should blog: The top advice I would give my younger self would be to start blogging sooner.

The context of your particular background, your particular style, and your knowledge level will give a different twist to what you’re writing about.” Unfortunately, when it comes to blogging, it seems like you have to make a decision: either use a platform that makes it easy, but subjects you and your readers to advertisements, pay walls, and fees, or spend hours setting up your own hosting and weeks learning about all kinds of intricate details.

Perhaps the biggest benefit to the “do-it-yourself” approach is that you really owning your own posts, rather than being at the whim of a service provider, and their decisions about how to monetize your content in the future.

You can host on a platform called GitHub Pages, which is free, has no ads or pay wall, and makes your data available in a standard way such that you can at any time move your blog to another host.

But all the approaches I’ve seen to using GitHub Pages have required knowledge of the command line and arcane tools that only software developers are likely to be familiar with.

For instance, GitHub’s own documentation on setting up a blog requires installing the Ruby programming language, using the git command line tool, copying over version numbers, and more.

Markdown is a powerful yet simple way of creating formatted text, such as bullet points, italics, hyperlinks, and so forth.

If you want to add a table of contents to your post (like this one), then add these 2 lines to your post in the place you want your table of contents to appear: Any headings that you’ve created (by starting a line with one or more # characters) will appear in the table of contents, with automatic links to the sections.

You can also add math equations using LaTeX within a paragraph by including them in $ characters, like this: $\sum_n (x)$, which appears as: $\sum_n (x)$ .

Or you can put them in their own paragraph by surrounding them in $$ on a line by themselves, like this: This appears like so: To make LaTeX math work in your blog, you have to change the line that reads use_math: in _config.yml so it reads: Now you know how to create a blog!

Then be sure to check out my followup post, where I show some of the powerful features that GitHub Pages supports, such as custom domains, and the ability to synchronize a folder on your own computer with GitHub and use your own word processing software.

#CareerBytes: Top online courses that techies are pursuing on Coursera

Deeplearning.ai is a company founded by Coursera co-founder and Stanford Professor, Andrew Ng;

it explores the frontier of Artificial Intelligence and offers world-class AI education online.

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