My Initial Impression of Ghost
So I have been using Ghost for this new blog and though it would be good to share my initial impressions. Bear in mind that Ghost is only at version 0.4.2 at the time of writing this, so I am sure that the minor issues I currently have will be addressed at some point.
The Good Stuff
One of the goals of Ghost is to make things simple for blogging and I think it does a really good job at that. Right now all you can really do is see a list of your posts, edit your posts, and then basic settings but what is has is really nice.
The list of the content is simple with just a list of title and status on the left and clicking on them gives a preview on the right. Edit content is pretty much the same, markdown you write on the left and the live HTML preview on the right. Setting are pretty standard.
I know this project is still early in it's development but I think (hope) that they will maintain this clean looking, minimalist UI for the admin tools.
I am a huge fan of MarkDown. I think it is a much cleaner and simpler way to write and store formatted text. Having editors like TinyMCE or CKEditor seemed like a good idea at the time but they just add complexity and what should be a really simple process, writing. I am really glad Ghost has gone with using MarkDown (along with not having a formatting toolbar at the top).
The manual installation process was pretty simple for me. I just followed the installation instructions they have. No issues and very minimal amount of work on my part. The only manual thing I have to do was tweak the
Even with the easy install, I just went with Digital Ocean's pre-configured droplet.
Ghost right know lacks a spell checker and since I am not the best speller in the world, it is a little annoying. I know this is something on their list of things to do, even though the "it should be fixed soon" was posted back in 15 October 2013. Until then, I am going to have to remember to copy my blog posts into an editor that does have spelling checking before I make the post public.
Overall I am pretty happy with Ghost as a blogging platform. My blogging needs are pretty basic so all the extra functionality that something like WordPress has is something I wont miss. I just need a simple platform where I can easily write blog posts (which Ghost provides) and display it is a nice clean way (which the Ghost Crisp Theme provides. I am pretty tech savvy so for the extra stuff I need (analytics, code syntax highlighting, etc...) I have been able to add easily myself.
It will be interesting to see how this project progresses in the future. You can look at the Roadmap to see the projects that are planned/in the works.