Static Site Generators and Github Pages

I told you a while ago about my experience building a static site with Hugo.  I was updating the page to show a few changes (notably to my book group website, but also to update the year in the footer).  I stumbled upon a small bug in Hugo’s date reporting, but the real issue that caused me to waste a ton of time was that in my aggravation, I wound up deleting the public folder to ensure a clean start.  But in a Github Pages based site, the public folder should really be a separate Github repo pointing to your target site!

So now I do a quick check in my deployment script to make sure I haven’t accidentally done this again.  Be sure you do something similar!

Note: If you are using Jekyll instead of Hugo, the same advice applies, but you’ll want to check _site instead of public.

Updating my book group website COMPLETE!

So I decided to go with Jekyll, a Ruby based static site generator. I created a new website for my book group, using a gem that makes it easy to autogenerate Amazon affiliate URLs with the Product Advertising API.

I open sourced the project in case anyone else wants to build a book club website, or any other type of website that uses Amazon affiliate links.

Updating my book group website

My beloved book group website is getting the dreaded “not mobile-friendly” warning from Google.  That’s because the site was built when “RWD” meant  “rear-wheel drive,” not “responsive web design!”  But challenge accepted – I will rework the site, and its 17 years of book choices – to be compatible with the modern web.  And you, dear reader, will be lucky enough to follow my adventure!

 

Zen Cart Per User and Group Specials – Now Supporting Sales!

Per User Group Specials now includes Sales support for Zen Cart 1.5.4 and 1.5.5.

Specials are per-product discounts that show up in the shopping cart as price reductions, whereas Sales are per-category discounts. But neither of these built-in discounts can be restricted to a single user or group by default, which is why I did Per User and Group Specials.

So now you can create a Special *or* a Sale, and keep it restricted to one particular customer or group.

Updates for Zen Cart 1.5.5a

All of my mods have been now updated for Zen Cart 1.5.5a. Here’s the list:

Documentation is Product Management

I have put a ton of effort into marking up my help pages with HTML id tags.  Here’s an example:

<h2 id="installation_problems">Installation Problems: </h2>

Why do this?

So when people ask questions I have seen dozens times before about an issue they are having installing Zen Cart Discount Preview, I send people directly to the portion of the Discount Preview documentation which describes installation problems: you can send them the link

http://www.thatsoftwareguy.com/zencart_discount_preview.html#installation_problems

Over time, as you build up your list of tags that you can use in answering questions, you are enabled to not only provide better service (since you can answer more quickly), but also to save time, since you don’t have to explain the answer again and again.  And on top of that, you’ll probably spend time refining the one answer you have written down to the question so that it improves in quality over time.

Pricing is Product Management – $450 Chase Sapphire Reserve sells out

Value-Seekers Warm to a $450 Annual Credit Card Fee – New York Times.

This is really interesting to me. Not because I’m going to run out and spend $450 on a credit card – but as a product manager.

Many product people assume a price sensitivity which is greater than the market actually feels. Chase now has three price points on their rewards cards – free (Chase Sapphire), $100/yr (Chase Sapphire Preferred) and now $450 (Chase Sapphire Reserve). The $450 price is on par with the MasterCard Luxury Card (formerly Black Visa) promoted by Barclays, and significantly lower than the Amex Centurion ($2500/yr). Even more interesting is the fact that Chase has not heavily promoted the card – it has gone viral through word of mouth. And in a world where consumers are saturated with messages, the ability to successfully use word of mouth marketing is gold. Or should I say Sapphire? 🙂