Dear Blog

It’s been a good run, but I’m breaking up with you. We just haven’t had enough time for each other in the last few years. There’s the kids, and sexy young things like Twitter and Facebook. We’ll always have the memories, and I’ll make sure your links don’t rot, but I think it’s time we face facts and move on.

Really it doesn’t mean that things are over, just that they need to change. And frankly those changes may take some time, because you aren’t a priority. Let me give you an idea of some things to expect.

First, let’s talk about looks. You look like this largely by accident. I developed this theme as a teaching object for one of my courses, showing students how to use their new HTML and CSS skills to theme a blog. I don’t love it and not just because the footer is mismatched (a simple tiling issue I haven’t had time to deal with in the last, oh, five years.) Many of the choices here had a didactic rather than design reason. Those icons? Made them for a quick lesson on image sprites. Frankly, my design cue more naturally would be Daring Fireball. Keep it simple.

Actually, Medium has largely done what I would do. Some of you may recognize those side-notes–I had them in an earlier iteration of the blog, when I was on a Tufte fanboy kick. I also experimented with tweet-comments. It’s still a little too busy for me, but it’s close.

Second, I tend to be a bit more diffuse in where I write things. I used to tweet on this blog, before there was a Twitter. I didn’t really do anything with Facebook. Now, I split things up more by length than by audience. Twitter for the very short or mobile. Facebook for the largely in-between (and a slightly less public audience, though generally the posts are world-viewable), and then here for longer form. And, I guess, journal articles and the like. I think this becomes an aggregator for all that, slurping up my tweets, posts to FB, Pinterest pins, YouTube videos, and everything else, and slapping them together locally.

There may also be a more cloistered space–perhaps a separate blog–that will be for friends and family and sharing pics and the like. I’m a little sick of Flickr, and FB isn’t a great place for hi-res photo archiving or sharing. It may be I go for one of the OS photo archiving systems for that–I haven’t really decided.

Third, I need to do a better job of putting forward my scholarly and professional side, once I discover it. At a minimum, that means collecting self-archived preprints and the like in an easily grokked space.

So, this probably won’t happen this week or this month. But it will happen, someday. Until then, blog, just chill.

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