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A simple and flexible static site generator for node.js

Why use a static site generator?

  • Static files are fast - You never know, you might just get slashdotted...
  • Plays well with version control - You can have a complete history of both the content and the code in git, easily backed up.
  • You can use your text editor of choice - I like to write my content in Vim, not in a textarea!
  • Less security concerns - No SQL injections or other attacks associated with dynamic content or exposing your admin area to the web.
  • Easy to deploy - You can just rsync or FTP the site to your server, nothing fancy needs to be installed on it. You could have git do this automatically on commit if you like... or, like me, you can have the server rebuild the site automatically when you push to it.
  • You no longer need to serve your own dynamic content - Lots of content you would normally want a database for can now be included using JavaScript. You can add comments via Disqus, you can embed calendars from Google Calendar... Many of these problems have already been solved. better. ;)

Why use Petrify?

  • Flexibility - Most other site generators focus on blogs, but Petrify can be used for a wide range of sites, from project documentation to event listings. This is achieved through allowing you to parse the content data in whichever way you like.
  • Write your views in JavaScript - Petrify uses JavaScript for parsing content. JavaScript is a widely used language, and if you know enough about HTML to want to use a static site generator, you probably know enough JavaScript to use Petrify.
  • Write your content in Markdown - Markdown is an easy to write, easy to read markup language inspired by the way people write in plain text emails. This works well if you host projects on GitHub, which is already very markdown friendly. You can run a Petrify site generator on the doc directory of your project and have pretty HTML docs for your own domain.

Getting started

First, install the latest version of node.js. Petrify uses git submodules for the rest of its dependencies. Once you've cloned the repository, do:

git submodule update --init --recursive

Then, cd to the examples directory and run the build script. This will create a www directory with a bunch of HTML files inside. Voila! you've just generated your first site. For now, the example site and the files in the doc directory will have to be enough to get you started.


A flexible static site generator for node.js







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