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20 Years of Blogging

Jay Cuthrell
December 12th, 2018 · 2 min read

20 years. Well, it’s probably more than 20 years if I include personal websites that changed. Good times.

Selective Saving

What I’ve saved over the years as a blog post has changed a lot. My most popular posts were only popular due to keywords. For example, anything that referenced Sender-Policy Framework was popular because SPF records probably appeared in the log files of frustrated email administrators. The most regular readers here are, by far, the crawlers. Crawlers to humans are probably around 100:1 at this point in the life of my blog. That’s the reality of 2018.

Adding Dates

When I had comments on my blog, it wasn’t uncommon to have someone keyword search on Google, Bing, etc. and end up here. Unfortunately, the date of my blog post wasn’t easy to see. So, the comments were from a perspective of here and now on a post squarely in the time and context of the original posting. I’ve long since removed comments posts but adding back the year as part of the post title was a riff on what HN does more often. My thinking was that if my content ever did make HN or a similar popular traffic site the comments would be in a context of the year the post was written.

Data Loss

WordPress made it easy to blog. WordPress made it easier to forget the implication of portability, data protection, and dependencies.

Flickr made it easy to share photos in blog posts. Flickr made it easier to forget the implication of consistent anchors, URLs, and presentation when giving up control to a third-party with year over year corporate entropy of apathy.

There are some great post I’ve made that were lost. Then again, much like any writer has a wadded up paper collection… I chalk up my losses to writing a better post later.

Changing Needs

When I was consulting and during the build up of the companies since the blogging was more vital to revenue. Now, there is structure and specialization and the need to be the scribe for a company is far less important. In fact, it might be easier to say that a personal blog is the worst place to talk about a company. There is no upside. It’s mostly downside.

Ease of Posting

Going from flat files to random perl based CMS to LAMP for WordPress was fun. I had several flirtations with Ghost, Hyde, Pelican, Hugo, etc. However, each time I tried to get away from Jekyll (still very much in use) there were caveats. Longer term, I’d like to get off of Jekyll for no other reason that just to learn new things to break. Go is interesting and I still get to play with python but I’d like to pick something that provides for a simpler workflow. Getting off of GitHub Pages meant going backwards a bit but it was how I also removed Google Analytics and other third-party CDN(s) from my approach.

Establishing Contact

After over a decade of Twitter, LinkedIn, etc… I’m trying other alternatives.

These days, I try to use more secure messaging methods.

Feel free to ping me anytime on Keybase, Signal, Wire, Telegram, or Confide.

My contact information is available at my personal website:

https://jaycuthrell.com/contact/

My LinkedIn profile is just a placeholder now.

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