For those of you coming to Ride Lightning today, you can’t fail to see the obvious changes in the look of the site. The change is more than cosmetic though. I have changed my publishing platform and switched to Movable Type. I want to explain why in this post.

I used to use iBlog, an elegant little desktop application for Mac that gives anyone the possibility to have a blog up and running in about 5 minutes. A great interface, perfect integration with key apps like iPhoto and iTunes, external partners (like HaloscanBlogsnaps etc…) with which to enhance the functionality, all made me think I had found the perfect blogging tool. No hassle to get the aesthetic I wanted and a solution focused on me getting my content up there the way I want fast.

Why the change and for what ? I moved to what I guess is the most widely used platform : Movable Type. It’s a server side application, a lot more complicated than iBlog. While I’m at it I would like to thank two people specifically here for the invaluable help they gave me in this transition : Guy at Wakatepe (my host) and Elise Bauer who unwittingly gave me tons of useful tips through her wonderful site Learning Movable Type. I moved for the following reasons :

1) I wanted more control over advanced features such as trackback, comments, the html in my posts, pinging, xml etc…
2) I wanted to able to post from anywhere on Mac and Windows. iBlog is Mac only and bound to the computer it’s installed on (I never managed to get blogsnaps to sync correctly between my desktop and my notebook).
3) I wanted a platform that has possibilities for extensions (plug-ins), customisation, evolution and that has a community behind it to support me through the trials and errors that inevitably come with anything related to computers.
4) I wanted safety and easy backup possibilities for the posts I had already written (iBlog started to have a tendency to crash a bit too often for my comfort).

Movable Type seems to be the answer to most of my problems and though I have had to learn a lot fast, I’m quite satisfied for now with what I’ve been able to do with it. I will be adding new functionality and features to the blog as I learn more about this platform. Meanwhile the pleasure of blogging can continue 😉

On a final note, all the previous articles have been imported into the site so nothing was lost during this transition 😉 If you have any remarks about the site’s new look and feel, features you miss or anything else, please do not hesitate to post your comments !