eSolia Colophon

On the shoulders of giants.

History

As they say, we “stand on the shoulders of giants", and this site is certainly no exception. We have built previous eSolia sites in Rapidweaver, Wordpress and Typo3, and the last one using Hugo.

Other systems have their pluses of course, but for various reasons, each previous system we have used has had some fragility related to matters like upgrades or dependencies.

Static Site Generators

When we were deciding upon a system to build this site in, back in 2014, we considered various systems known as “static site generators”, which allow you to weave a static website together from content files, script programs, and image files. However these static systems too have pre-requisites, in that a full development environment is required on the computer used to manage the site. This is as problematic as the requirements of a server-side CMS.

Go Hugo

Enter Hugo, a better static site generator, about which we learn:

Hugo is written for speed and performance. Great care has been taken to ensure that Hugo build time is as short as possible. We're talking milliseconds to build your entire site for most setups.

The reason Hugo's so fast is it's a single, binary program written in the “Go” language, that's been compiled for Windows, Mac and Linux. Users just install a single file appropriate to their system, then run it to merge their folders of content written in Markdown text format, HTML templates, CSS and Javascript files.

Let us just say that it takes far longer to upload the site to our web host, than it does for Hugo to generate it. Its speed is truly a remarkable software engineering feat.

Hugo is eSolia's preferred SSG.

So, a hearty “domo arigato” to Hugo founder Steve Francia (@spf13), lead developer Bjørn Erik Pedersen (@bep), and fantastic contributors. Thanks also go to the Go language team itself, and the helpful folks on the Hugo discussion forums).

Site Look

The look of this site comes from a couple of different components.

First, the stylistic base of the site comes from a the css library called “Bulma”. About Bulma:

Bulma is an open source CSS framework based on Flexbox and used by more than 100,000 developers.

It allows you to have consistency in your basic styles, responsiveness to support mobile users, and acts as a great starting point for any site.

As for Type Faces, the main one is Ryo Gothic from Adobe Typekit (see also the auto-generated colophon for more info). We got some hints also from Web Typography as well.

The icons you see are from Font Awesome.

The photos and most graphics on this site are by Rick Cogley, unless otherwise noted.

Data

For the short posts and project lists on the home page, news archive and success stories pages, we are pulling information from our company ERP system running on PROdb, our cloud database. The Info Request form pushes info a table in PROdb as well, to allow for some automation. Additionally, we are protecting the info request form with Google Re-Captcha.

Hosting

This site and its Japanese counterpart are hosted in Amazon AWS object storage S3 and delivered globally via Amazon's content delivery network (CDN) CloudFront. DNS is hosted on AWS Route53, a robust and fast DNS service.

The repository for this site is hosted at Github.

We're Humans(.txt)

We also have a humans.txt file. Humans.txt is an attempt to standardize on a way of making a site colophon, in text format, and plays upon the robots.txt files that give directives about your site, to the search engine crawler programs that index it.

Click it, and you'll see the same basic information as on this page, in a simple text only form.

Thanks!

Sites don't always properly acknowledge contributions, but believe us, every site on the Internet owes a debt of gratitude to many parties, other than the company that did the site design.

Finally, thanks also to team eSolia for the many hours working on content.

Now to get back to business!

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