Creating a Data Story as a Website

For those of you who want to create a data story as a website, we have good news: You don’t need to host the website yourself, but you can host it directly via the GitHub repository of your project. We have compiled a short tutorial on how to do this below. There is an easy way for simpler websites, and a more difficult way for more complex websites.

Simple Website

  1. Visit the page of your project repository on GitHub.
  2. Click “Settings”, and scroll down to the section “GitHub Pages”
  3. Click “Choose a theme”.
  4. After you’ve picked a theme, a file index.md is created in your repository and prefilled with some content. Commit it. It will be committed to a new branch called gh-pages.
  5. If you now go to <github_username>.github.io/<repo_name>, you see a website with the selected theme and with the content of the index.md file that you just committed.
  6. You can change the website content by switching to the gh-pages branch and editing the index.md file. Formatting is done with standard GitHub Markdown syntax.

Complex Website

  1. If you want to have more freedom, you can create your own website from scratch using, e.g., Jekyll. As the GitHub themes, Jekyll allows you to easily create websites using Markdown, but gives you more freedom in the design. For example, there is a much larger number of freely available themes than those that GitHub offers.
  2. Once you have created your site, commit it to your repository. Make sure that there is a file “index.html”, which will be the page that is accessible under <github_username>.github.io/<repo_name>.
  3. Go to “Settings”, scroll down to “GitHub Pages”, and under “Source” select the branch to which you committed your website files. After clicking “Save”, you should be able to access the website at <github_username>.github.io/<repo_name>.