State of the Blog 2018
I’ve never done an entry like this before, but I have for a number of years tried to review the year for myself personally on the day before my birthday. Even those posts don’t get very deep; I inevitably gloss over the finer points of the year in a general ‘get a sense of it’ style. ‘Was it a good, better or best?’-year type vibe.
But I’d like to get better with that kind of writing, which I THINK means doing more of it. So here we go. Just going to forge a path through unknown (to me) territory like I always tend to do.
I CAN say that year-by-year the blog ‘under performs’ because like many of my pet projects I treat it mostly like a playground. That is mostly due to my underdeveloped work ethic with it comes to my creativity. I suppose we could get super deep into my psychology about how I go about broadcasting half-baked ideas and my historical lack of parental love and acceptance. Whoa. That’s a little too deep even for me. Let’s keep it light-hearted in here, shall we?
But the truth is I do tend to start things and not really have a plan to finish them. Or to leap forward without an idea of the big picture. In the case of this blog it has certainly evolved out of an opportunity to self-educate. When blogging first started, the number of platforms that emerged seemed too numerous to follow. From them, I picked one that seemed to have a large user base and that had fostered a community around self guided learning. I didn’t have any sort of plan other than that. Not even a real topic. I was really very fortunate that the WordPress platform evolved around much of the other media trends I would eventually adopt interest in. Namely, Podcasting.
Once I got into the audio portions of my still developing self-expression, the longer game of keeping the blog going started to take form. I was MAKING things. And I’d need to be able to store those things somewhere. At this point in the blog’s history I was doing a lot of self-starting and self hosting. When I decided to start dropping money into this project the reason to do so was to be able to pump some longevity into it. I paid for basic web hosting services and data storage and taught myself through trial and error how to install and maintain the software end. It didn’t hurt that I worked in Internet Service Support at the time. Whenever I ran into technical difficulty I was lucky to be able to ask someone who knew about these things face to face. And seeking answers to my own projects problems helped me in a professional capacity. Like I said, the blog was and still is my sandbox, first and foremost. In that way, it’s been an integral part of coming up in Internet Technical Support know-how.
It wasn’t until about 2 years ago that I decided to ditch the do-it-yourself methods of maintenance and hosting and began to drop serious money into a fully hosted version of the site. I had run into problems keeping the site secure and infested by “Hax0r” bots. My own research had basically revealed that the web hosting provider only did the bare minimum to keep their servers invasion free and often treated their paying customers as the problem, not the paying client. So when that occurred I decided I cared enough to get “serious” about keeping my blog.
Now, as far as personal expenditures go, this is not a good model. The blog has evolved. It’s still primarily a workbench and sandbox. But it has sort of become my digital legacy. It serves as my journal, both publicly and privately. In Audio posts as well as text entries. And because of that it doesn’t really pay for itself. And yet when my day comes when I can no longer make new posts or content it will be what remains of my digital footprint. I know that seems like a big jump from the introduction, but I’ve skipped over quite a bit to move this post along.
Today, we still have some gaping holes in consistency. I still go through fits of having nothing to say or share. Even the Private Posts side is a lot more empty than I would like. But I find that as much as I WANT to fill this site with content it has, in the past, come down to how I feel at any given moment.
Sometimes I manage to cobble together something to share. A lot of times I just plain forget about it. Its a real shoddy approach. But it’s still mine.
And that is fine. I mean, I’m not THAT proud of the slap-dash approach to having this thing be what it is. But I’m ok that it is not as comprehensive as it could be. Often times I imagine what readers well beyond my years of updating this would have to take away from these posts. Mostly, I think their take-away would be, its this guy yelling into the void “I was here!” That makes me chuckle quite a bit.
So the State of the Blog is this: It’s still here. There is a chance it could get better. I’m had some thoughts about digging through my old LiveJournal Archives and trying to get those posts imported in. Same with my Facebook Profile and Page. Minus all the Game Status shares that litter that space. If I do get around to doing that then all that content would become searchable in the site search. That would be cool, I think.
And to be clear, this isn’t the only journal I keep. I have an account over at Day One that is doing a kind of backup of this and some of my other Social Media. Because I learned my lesson about keeping all your eggs in the same basket long ago. I mean, ultimately they are all still in a Digital basket. But at least there are a couple of those baskets, just in case.
I like having a blog. Maybe one day I’ll settle on a form of expression that lends to a more consistent end product. But as long as I’m screaming into the void, you might as well know that it wasn’t all the time. Sometimes there were pictures. Or TV Watching. Or Movie Reviews. Or Audio Journals. Or something I haven’t focused on yet.
My life is still a playground. The ultimate Sandbox.