December 22, 2023
Why Hugo Blox is a great idea

I came across a website called Hugo Blox and it immediately reminded me of my Hugobricks concept. Soon I realized I had seen this website before… but then with the name ‘Wowchemy’. Now let me explain why Hugo Blox is a great idea, but with sub-optimal execution.

Stackable content blocks make it easy for editors to customize their website. This is a very powerful concept and because these websites are modular, they can be a great fit for many different people. The way you store those content blocks, however, is very important.

All content blocks in Hugo Blox reside in the front matter. You might think that that is no problem, maybe even a logical choice… but that is not true. Your average SSG CMS/editor does not know which fields need to be in which block. And even worse: your average CMS assumes that each array in the front matter has the same key-value pairs. This means that you have to configure your CMS so that it will recognize every (new) block. That means that you lose the interoperability between CMS systems, which is kind of a big deal.

What does not help either, is that the author is unclear about his sources. For example: on this page he refers to ‘Hugo CMS’. He says Hugo CMS is based on the Netlify CMS project (a few years ago he even called it ‘Wowchemy CMS’). He then links to Netlify, who has abandoned this project and transferred everything to a Slovenian company, called PM, who then renamed it to Decap CMS.

Decap CMS is the Hugo CMS he talks about (which ironically is not Hugo-only and never has been). It is indeed open-source. However, only two or three bugs are being fixed per month, while there are 135 open bugs. It would be fair if the author would warn you for that. His suggestion to use Visual Studio Code as a content editor (next to Decap CMS) on this newer page is also confusing. You cannot compare Decap CMS to a text editor.

But… enough complaining. If you think Hugo Blox is a great idea, just take a look at Hugobricks. You should also read my post on why SSG’s are boring, where I explain that Microsoft has the perfect solution for you. This solution is not only rock-solid and well documented… it is free as well.

PS. Note that a Hugo-only CMS actually exists. You can find it on

Happy coding!

()  Joost van der Schee

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