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Publishing new blog post entitle

"Welcome back to the old world"
Elia el Lazkani 10 months ago
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- name: blog-path
path: /mnt/new_blog/
path: /mnt/blog/


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.. title: Welcome back to the old world
.. date: 2020-08-31
.. slug: welcome-back-to-the-old-world
.. updated: 2020-08-31
.. status: published
.. tags: blog, orgmode, nikola, emacs, rst
.. category: misc
.. authors: Elia el Lazkani
.. description: Sometimes, change is good. Also, sometimes moving back is moving forward.
.. type: text
I have recently blogged about moving to /emacs/ and the reasons behind it.
Since then, I have used /Orgmode/ a lot more. And I have begun to like it even more. I had a plan to move the blog to /[[][Hugo]]/. After giving it a try, I had inconsistent results. I must've been doing something wrong. I've spend a lot more time than I anticipated on it. At some point, it becomes an endeavor with diminishing returns. So I ditched that idea.
But why did I want to move to /Hugo/ in the first place ?
* Why /Hugo/ you may ask
Well, the answer to that question is very simple; /Orgmode/.
The long answer is that the default /Nikola/ markup language and the most worked on is /reStructuredText/. It can support other formats. /Orgmode/ also seems widely supported and can be easily manipulated. So I want to move to /Orgmode/ instead of /rst/.
But what are the odds ?
Damn... It has plugins and you can find an [[][orgmode]] page where you find
$ nikola plugin -i orgmode
Where the heck did that come from ? Okay that was easy.
Turns out /Nikola/ supports /Orgmode/.
* Nikola /Orgmode/ plugin installation
The page suggests running.
$ nikola plugin -i orgmode
Followed by
#+BEGIN_SRC python
# NOTE: Needs additional configuration in init.el file.
# Add the orgmode compiler to your COMPILERS dict.
COMPILERS["orgmode"] = ['.org']
# Add org files to your POSTS, PAGES
POSTS = POSTS + (("posts/*.org", "posts", "post.tmpl"),)
PAGES = PAGES + (("pages/*.org", "pages", "page.tmpl"),)
Okay, that's not too bad. Next step.
* Alright, let's run our first org post
The installation was easy, running it should be just as easy.
$ nikola auto
[2020-08-31 23:16:17] INFO: auto: Rebuilding the site...
Scanning posts..........done!
. render_taxonomies:output/archive.html
. render_taxonomies:output/categories/index.html
. copy_assets:output/assets/css/index.css
. copy_assets:output/assets/css/
. copy_assets:output/assets/js/
. copy_assets:output/assets/js/index.js
. copy_assets:output/assets/css/rst_base.css
. copy_assets:output/assets/css/ipython.min.css
. copy_assets:output/assets/css/html4css1.css
. copy_assets:output/assets/css/nikola_rst.css
. copy_assets:output/assets/css/baguetteBox.min.css
. copy_assets:output/assets/css/nikola_ipython.css
. copy_assets:output/assets/css/rst.css
. copy_assets:output/assets/css/theme.css
. copy_assets:output/assets/js/justified-layout.min.js
. copy_assets:output/assets/js/html5.js
. copy_assets:output/assets/js/gallery.min.js
. copy_assets:output/assets/js/fancydates.js
. copy_assets:output/assets/js/baguetteBox.min.js
. copy_assets:output/assets/js/gallery.js
. copy_assets:output/assets/js/html5shiv-printshiv.min.js
. copy_assets:output/assets/js/luxon.min.js
. copy_assets:output/assets/js/fancydates.min.js
. copy_assets:output/assets/xml/rss.xsl
. copy_assets:output/assets/xml/atom.xsl
. copy_assets:output/assets/css/code.css
. render_posts:cache/posts/text-editors/emacs-and-org-mode.html
Loading /etc/emacs/site-start.d/00debian.el (source)...
Loading /etc/emacs/site-start.d/50dictionaries-common.el (source)...
Loading debian-ispell...
Loading /var/cache/dictionaries-common/emacsen-ispell-default.el (source)...
Loading /var/cache/dictionaries-common/emacsen-ispell-dicts.el (source)...
Created img-url link.
Created file link.
Please install htmlize from
TaskError - taskid:render_posts:cache/posts/text-editors/emacs-and-org-mode.html
PythonAction Error
Traceback (most recent call last):
File "/home/user/", line 75, in compile
File "/home/user/anaconda3/envs/nikola/lib/python3.8/", line 364, in check_call
raise CalledProcessError(retcode, cmd)
subprocess.CalledProcessError: Command '['emacs', '--batch', '-l', '/home/user/', '--eval', '(nikola-html-export "/home/user/" "/home/user/")']' returned non-zero exit status 255.
During handling of the above exception, another exception occurred:
Traceback (most recent call last):
File "/home/user/anaconda3/envs/nikola/lib/python3.8/site-packages/doit/", line 437, in execute
returned_value = self.py_callable(*self.args, **kwargs)
File "/home/user/anaconda3/envs/nikola/lib/python3.8/site-packages/nikola/", line 711, in compile
File "/home/user/", line 94, in compile
raise Exception('''Cannot compile {0} -- bad org-mode configuration (return code {1})
Exception: Cannot compile posts/text-editors/ -- bad org-mode configuration (return code 255)
The command is emacs --batch -l /home/user/ --eval '(nikola-html-export "/home/user/" "/home/user/")'
render_posts:cache/posts/text-editors/emacs-and-org-mode.html <stdout>:
[2020-08-31 23:16:29] INFO: auto: Serving on ...
[2020-08-31 23:16:36] INFO: auto: Server is shutting down.
I knew there was a catch !
You might be looking for the error message and it might take you a while. It took me a bit to find out what was wrong. The error is actually the following.
Please install htmlize from
It turns out that the plugin is a /python/ script that calls /emacs/ with a configuration =init.el=. I know I have /htmlize/ installed on my /doom/ system but /Nikola/ does not see it.
After looking around the internet, I found the =init.el= file I'm looking for. It's in =plugins/orgmode/init.el= and it has the following few lines at the top.
#+BEGIN_SRC emacs-lisp
(require 'package)
(setq package-load-list '((htmlize t)))
Okay, that's what's trying to load /htmlize/. Let's try to add it to the =load-path= as follows.
#+BEGIN_SRC emacs-lisp
(require 'package)
(add-to-list 'load-path "~/.emacs.d/.local/straight/build/htmlize")
(setq package-load-list '((htmlize t)))
Now, let's try /Nikola/.
$ nikola auto
[2020-08-31 23:30:32] INFO: auto: Rebuilding the site...
Scanning posts..........done!
[2020-08-31 23:30:36] INFO: auto: Serving on ...
Woohoo ! It works. Now let's move to the next steps. Writing our first blog post.
* First /Org/ post
Let's create this blog post.
<div class="admonition warning">
<p class="admonition-title">warning</p>
It is very important to use the =nikola= command line interface to create the post. I spent too much time trying to figure out the /header/ settings.
$ nikola new_post -1 -f orgmode -t orgmode posts/misc/
Now edit the /org/ file and save it. /Nikola/ should pick it up and render it.
* Yes, I have made more changes
** Theme
I have moved the blog to the /[[][willy-theme]]/ which offers /light/ and *dark* modes and good code highlighting.
** Blog post format
You might have also noticed that there were big changes to the repository. All the blog posts have been converted to /Orgmode/ now, both /pages/ and /posts/.
I used [[][pandoc]] to do the initial conversion from /rst/ to /Orgmode/ as follows.
$ pandoc --from rst --to org /path/to/file.rst > /path/to/
I know, I know. It does a pretty good initial job but you will need to touch up the posts. Fortunately, I did not have a lot of blog posts yet. Unfortunately, I had enough for the task to take a few days. For me, it was worth it.
* Conclusion
This was a long overdue project, I am happy to finally put it behind me and move foward with something simple that works with my current flow.


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