Moving to Quarto


June 30, 2023

Moving to Quarto

For quite a while, I’ve been (and to be honest: I still am) a big fan of Joomla!, a flexible content management system to build websites. My first webpage using a CMS was build using Mambo, the predecessor of Joomla! Since then, I have build and maintained quite some websites, from registered associations with e-commerce solutions to project websites (e.g. VisArgue, DeLab) to my private website. As you might have recognized (and as the title tells), this page is not build using Joomla! So why is this?

Let me briefly explain my rationale for moving my private site to quarto:

  1. The first answer is more related to the When and not the Why: My (old) webpage was running an older version of Joomla! with a template being incompatible with the recent version. So besides migrating content, I anyhow would have had to implement and adapt to a new template. Similarly, with new projects incoming, it was more than a timely issue to update the page.
  2. Of course, I first thought about implementing a new Joomla! template and then migrating the content. There are lots of nice templates available and most of them just need some color adjustments to fit my personal taste, if at all. However, setting up a Joomla! CMS for my private website is too much of a good thing and does not anymore fit my workflow. All Most of my recent materials are written in the quarto markdown language: For slides and scripts for teaching, I rely on revealjs; same is true for conference and project presentations. For most collaborative projects, I use the HTML output and share these pages using a private (protected) web repository. On my private website, I don’t use multilingual pages and I have hardly ever logged in to the CMS from elsewhere than my notebook.
  3. After a quick round of searching, I was left with two options: (a) Bookdown and Hugo or (b) using quarto’s native website engine. I have used Hugo in the seminars “Applied Multivariate Data Analysis” to publish my scripts and, more importantly, students’ projects (2019 and 2021), so I have some Hugo experiences. However, I remember getting to run Hugo was sometimes a bit fiddling. So I just gave quarto’s native engine a try. There still are some bits and bytes here and there, but overall, it works well. It fits my workflow and might motivate myself (if time allows) to blog more often.