Time for Action

If you do not find the information you want, please have a look at the exhaustive and up to date documentation of the Wowchemy theme.


The installation consist of downloading the Wowchemy Starter Academic template:

git clone https://github.com/wowchemy/starter-academic.git website

Once the Wowchemy template is installed, it suffices to run Hugo in server mode:

cd website
hugo server

This will launch a local web server. In your favorite browser (firefox, chrome, edge, …) go to http://localhost:1313: you should get a website talking about the Wowchemy theme, something like the image below (probably different due to some updates):

Splashscreen (possibly different)
Splashscreen (possibly different)

Unlike, the traditional ((Lua)La)TeX command, Hugo is monitoring the source files and is updating the content seen in your browser almost in real time. To close the local webserver, type Ctrl+C in the terminal where Hugo is running.


Now you definitely want to customize our website! Prior to that, let us just have a few words about the folders composing your repository:

  • config/_default/: Starts here: open the configuration files there and changes the meta-data as you want
  • content/: This is where the content of your website is stored, in the form of markdown files
    • content/home: Homepage, every .md file (except index) is a widget that you can activate or not
    • content/post: Your post messages (blog)
    • content/project: Your projects
    • content/publication: Your scientific papers
    • content/talk: Your talks
  • static/: Local files (image, …) that will be available online

The /exampleSite folder is great to get up-to-date examples.

You should now go to the documentation of the Wowchemy theme to get a nice and customized webpage.

Hugo: tips & tricks

Base URL

In config/_default/config.toml, there is a line for the baseurl option:

baseurl = "/"

There you must provide the base url of your website. For example, if your website is hosted at https://my-lab.fr/users/~me/ then you should copy paste that URL into baseurl:

baseurl = "https://my-lab.fr/users/~me/"

This helps hugo to search for the file in the right place, especially the .css file (design)!


Basically, the structure of your content/ folder will be kept in your future website:

graph LR A("content/projet/hello/index.md") -->|hugo|B("https://my-lab.fr/users/~me/project/hello/")

You can hence add custom folders and files in your content folder (you are not restricted by the theme!).

A good idea though, is to keep the page bundle system: one folder per “page”. For example, if you want to add a page, say website.com/legal, declaring the Legal Notice of your website, you can create a folder and file at content/legal/index.md.

Remove Netlify CMS

As you most probably will not use Netlify CMS, you can remove the directory content/admin/ and delete the following line in config/_default/config.yaml:

- path: github.com/wowchemy/wowchemy-hugo-modules/wowchemy-cms/v5