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Getting started with Blot

Blot is a blogging platform. It creates a folder inside your Dropbox and publishes files you put inside. Blot exists so that you can use your favorite text editor to write your blog.

Posts

All of these files become blog posts automatically when you put them inside your site’s folder:

Public files

Every file in your site’s folder is public. This means you can use Blot as a static file server. For example, if you put the file lime.zip in your folder, your readers can download it: www.your-site.com/lime.zip.

Skipping files and folders

Blot will ignore files and folders whose name starts with an underscore. apple.jpg will become a blog post but _cherry.jpg will not. You can use this feature to embed a photo in a seperate post.

Pages

Files in a folder called ‘Pages’ are added to your blog’s menu and do not become blog posts.

Drafts

Files inside a folder called ‘Drafts’ are not published to your site. Blot creates a preview which you can open in your browser.

Formatting blog posts

Blot supports Markdown, a markup language designed for plain text files. You can use Markdown to add headings, lists and much more to your blog posts. Blot can also parse mathematical statements set in LaTeX and add syntax highlighting to code snippets.

Open the full formatting guide →

Metadata

Blot generates metadata for each post automatically, including a publish date, permalink, thumbnail and a summary. You can override Blot’s metadata with your own:

Date: February 28th, 1973
Tags: Literature, Schwarzgerät

# Gravity's Rainbow

A screaming comes across the sky.

Metadata must start on the file’s first line and be separated from the rest of the post by a blank line. Here’s the full reference for metadata Blot creates for each post on your site:

Key Value
Date Defaults to this file’s creation date. Set the post’s publish date using one of the supported formats.
Title Defaults to the first title in this post or its file name.
Tags Empty by default. Seperate your tags with a comma.
Permalink Defaults to a URL-friendly version of the post’s title. You can specify one here or change your site’s default permalinks on the dashboard.
Summary Defaults to the first sentence of the first paragraph in the file.
Teaser Like summary but a little longer. Defaults to the first few paragraphs.
Thumbnail Generated from the largest image in the post. You can specify a path or URL to an image.
Draft Defaults to ‘No’. Anything truthy (e.g. ‘Yes’) will turn the post into a draft.
Page Defaults to ‘No’. Anything truthy (e.g. ‘Yes’) will turn the post into a page and add it to your blog’s menu.
Menu Defaults to ‘Yes’ if the file is a page. Anything falsy (e.g. ‘No’) will hide the page from your site’s menu.

Dates

Blot uses the file’s creation date as its publish date by default. You can specify a different date in the file’s metadata:

Date: March 8th, 1937

# North and South

As you travel northward your eye, accustomed to...

Blot supports a variety of ways that people write dates. Each of the following formats produces a blog post with the same date:

12/06/2017    12.6.17    12-6-2017    2017-6-12 00:00

You can also use the file’s path to specify a publish date:

/2017/6.12.Awe.txt   /2017/6/12/Awe.txt   2017-06-12-00:00-Awe.txt

If you write the numbers in your dates in different order, please tell Blot on the settings page. If you specify a date in the future, Blot will wait until then to publish it. And if you prefer, you can hide the dates on your site.

Blot generates a permalink for each post automatically. You can choose the general format of default permalinks on the dashboard. Or you can specify a permalink in the metadata at the top of a file:

Permalink: /nightingale

I have heard the nightingale itself.

Tags

You can tag a post in the metadata at the top of a file:

Tags: Literature, Book notes

# Breakfast at Tiffany's

A great zircon in the diadem of American literature.

You can also use brackets in a folder’s name to tag posts. For example, all the files in a folder called ‘[Literature]’ will become blog posts tagged ‘Literature’. You can nest folders:

[Literature] / [Book notes] / Breakfast-at-Tiffany's.txt

Tags can contain whitespace. Although tags are case-insensitive, it’s worth capitalizing tags consistently. Blot shows the most recent case when displaying a tag on your site.

Teasers

Some of Blot’s templates show a teaser for each post on the homepage, and include a link to the read full post. By default, Blot creates a teaser from the first few paragraphs in the post. You can specify the breakpoint in the file yourself:

# Lycurgus

He was of the opinion that even in death a statesman
should benefit his state, that even the end of a 
statesman's life should not be vain, but should be
classed as an effective act of virtue. After all the
wonderful things he had achieved, he felt that for...

{{more}}

Nor were his calculations misguided, because there was
no state in Greece to match Sparta for lawfulness and
fame for a very long time, since it adhered to...

Everything before {{more}} will be included in the teaser, and the rest will be shown on the post’s page. You can also use <!-- more --> in an HTML file.