I have been playing about with Git

This is just a quick note to say that over the last week I have started to make some basic progress on something I have been interested in for along time: using Git as a writer.

Just in case you aren’t familiar with Git, it’s version control software created by Linus Torvalds (the guy who came up with Linux).

There’s a better chance that you’ve heard of Github, which is a website that makes it easier to use Git, and also lets you backup your work to a third party.

I never wanted to use Github, and, anyway, Github is not easy either unless you kind of understand some things about Git, the command line, what the hell a “commit” is and etc. I tried a few times and got very frustrated.

Eventually I got it into my head that I wanted to do it “pure” and failed a number of times to sort it out.

But I seem to be making a bit of progress now and it’s always exciting when you start to figure out something technical and have breakthroughs in understanding what’s special about a technology.

For me, with Git, it was the idea of branching: that one file could exist as two files with subtle differences so long as you told the computer which hunk of memory to work with. It’s like you could hide a secret in plain site.

Actually, it would be a pretty sweet way for a kid to keep a phony journal on their computer in a way that their family could not easily find it. Just hide it on the “journal” branch. It wouldn’t show up in the file system as long as the kid remembered to check out every time they shut down their computer. Pretty sly.

Today I’ve been learning Pandoc, which is helpful for converting file formats. Sadly though I have learned that it’s not perfect. It seems to insert a lot of line breaks with may or may not be a problem when converting back. I’m not sure. I’ve got to sort that out.

I also found that when I tried to make a Markdown version for the basic template I use for posts on this site it lost a bunch of parts of the page that it just didn’t understand (or maybe that Markdown doesn’t have language for). So that was disappointing.

Still, though, I think it will actually be better.

Tonight I also hope to maybe figure out Git Hooks so I can update my website using Git. That would be very, very cool. It might not also be over my head?

Anyway, this has been written in Markdown and then converted to HTML and finally plopped into my template. If you can see this, it all worked out okay.

—Brady Dale
November 3, 2018

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