Blogs Rule, Web Sites Don’t

This will be my 57th post on this blog. That’s not a very high average for more than a year since I started the blog, but it’s still pretty good. I’ve been on the web since about 1996 when I was in the Navy and decided to split an apartment with a computer geek to whom I became a "paduwon" or however they spell it in Star Wars. I learned a lot from him.

In the time since I’ve been online, I’ve had quite a few ISPs. I had a cable modem when they were first rolled out in San Diego in 1997. I moved to New Jersey in 1999 before they were widely available. Just as I got a cable modem in my neighborhood, I moved into another neighborhood that did not have cable modems available.

Through all of the dial-up, cable, and DSL providers I’ve had, I’ve never really used the free web space. Every now and again I’d put up a page. When I first met my wife, I had her write me a short page in Notepad for my old Earthlink space. I once put up my own page written in raw html, and I’ve put together pages in Frontpage. I currently have a site up on my Comcast web space that I put together last year.

But it’s such a pain in the neck to maintain. I can only get Frontpage to publish to the web about half the time. I tried to work with my site on Comcast, and for some reason Frontpage just can’t use my username and password, even though I’m doing everything right according to Comcast’s instructions. Even if I put a page up, what do I do with it? Creating new pages means going back and adding links to other pages, which takes more time.

In contrast, blogs are easy. Most are provided free, at least at no monetary cost. Little by little, we’re giving up our lives and privacy to advertisers, but like the proverbial frog in the pot of gradually warming water, we probably won’t notice until it’s too late. The blog is very simple. I get an idea, draft a post, and post it. I can post in many ways, either through the online client, by email, by a third party offline client, by the blogger for Word add-in; the list is practically endless. I can compose an entry on my Pocket PC while I’m away and upload it later. It is truly amazing how easy blogging can be. The hardest part is deciding what to write about. Should your blog have a dedicated theme? Should it just be whatever you’re thinking of at the moment? Should you have several blogs for all of your different hobbies and interests?

In contrast to trying to maintain a web site, I find blogging a very simple way to maintain a presence on the web and to network with other like minded individuals. Take the GTD and productivity community, for instance. The same people are in most of the groups and discussion forums, their blogs all link to one another, and in a sense they all work together to find ways to make GTD work better.

I think I’ll stick to blogging.

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