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Jekyll for minimal exhibitions with IIIF 🐝
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Wax is an extensible workflow for producing scholarly exhibitions with minimal computing principles.
It's comprised of: a few Ruby gems for processing image data and associated metadata (wax_tasks, wax_iiif), a Jekyll theme (wax_theme), and (hopefully soon!) a lot of documentation and recipes for creating, deploying, and maintaining digital exhibitions.


You'll need Ruby >= 2.4 with bundler installed. Check your versions with:

$ ruby -v
  ruby 2.4.5p335 (2018-10-18 revision 65137) [x86_64-darwin18]

$ bundler -v
  Bundler version 2.0.1

To process images, you will also need to have ImageMagick and Ghostscript installed and functional. You can check to see if you have ImageMagick by running:

$ convert -version
  Version: ImageMagick 6.9.9-20 Q16 x86_64 2017-10-15
  Copyright: (c) 1999-2017 ImageMagick Studio LLC

... and check Ghostscript with:

$ gs -version
  GPL Ghostscript 9.21 (2017-03-16)
  Copyright (C) 2017 Artifex Software, Inc.  All rights reserved.

Getting Started

There are a few ways to get started with Wax, depending on your needs. Downloading the demo is suggested for new users so you can see how a full Wax site would work. Advanced Jekyllers can start from a clean Jekyll install.

Downloading the demo

  1. Change directory into where you'd like your site, e.g., your Desktop:

    cd ~/Desktop
  2. Download the zip file from the wax github repository. The option to download the zip file should be on the button labeled "Clone or download." Your browser will save the file where it normally saves downloads.

  3. Move the zip file to the location you will use. In our example, to the Desktop.

  4. Unzip the file. This can be done through your operating system graphic user interface, or in the terminal:


    You can delete the zip file once you're done.

  5. Rename the directory and go inside the project folder:

    mv wax-master my-project
    cd wax-master
  6. Install the gems:

    bundle install
  7. Run the demo site:

    bundle exec jekyll serve

After the last step the terminal will provide you with a localhost URL for you to see your local copy of the site on your browser. This is the site you will make changes to in order to make your own.

Option 2: Start from scratch (Advanced)

  1. Make a new Jekyll site and cd into it:
jekyll new ~/Desktop/wax_site
cd ~/Desktop/wax_site
  1. Add this line to your Jekyll site's Gemfile:
gem "wax_theme"
  1. And add this line to your Jekyll site's _config.yml:
theme: wax_theme
  1. Install the dependencies:
bundle install
  1. Serve the site locally
bundle exec jekyll serve

When the demo site is serving correctly you're ready to swap in your own content and configuration to make your own exhibition site.

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