Ok, so I’m getting my blog going again. Or… rather – for the first time.
I’ve probably started and abandoned more than a dozen blogs in my time. Blogger, WordPress, MovableType, Tumblr, and probably a few others that I’ve forgotten, are littered with the skeletal remains of various attempts to enter the blogosphere in a meaningful way. I really made my big push about a year ago when I chose WordPress as my platform of choice, and even went so far as to register some domains, including my vanity “timjmitchell” moniker. Although, as much as I like to hear myself talk, I really had a hard time getting posts started and even a harder time completing them. Part of that inability is simply life (work, marriage, social, music, etc.) taking up time, but part of it was really not really understanding why I was doing it in the first place. A quick search on Technorati can yield for you any number of other people’s reasons , but I think I’ve finally come to my own conclusions.
The practical and “hard” answer is that given what I do for a living, it behooves me to have a well organized site where I can not only express ideas, but where I can tinker, experiment, and otherwise play with whatever social media or web detritus I might want to understand. A blog these days can be very technically sophisticated, and with all of the plug-ins, social media integration, and SEO capabilities now available, a good blog can be a real asset to one’s career. As a product management type, it’s really an interesting experiment to have one property/destination/whatever where there is no “cross-functional-ness” at all – it’s just me, some tools, the web, and my own good, bad, or neutral decisions. I’m working on a post now that goes into this in more detail, so I’ll spare you more discussion. Ultimately, given what I do, its almost a problem NOT having a blog – – whether or not that says something positive or negative about web-working I’ll leave to others. At the very least, I own a domain with my name in it and an email address that goes along with that – frankly, that was the main reason I set it up in the first place.
A more metaphysical and “soft” answer is that it allows for a certain type of mental exercise that falls outside of work and/or normal social discussion. Never mind my predilection for using Facebook http://www.facebook.com as mostly a container for funny links and videos or snarky comments on other people’s posts – – I mean, isn’t that what its for? Ok, Ok, I know that there are meaningful ways it can be used for business, but that’s for another post – – I think Facebook should mostly be for fun, and that’s just me. My blog has got to be a sincere attempt at expressing sincere ideas. I think being able to post about subjects that I am not an expert on, for example, is a really productive way to remind yourself how to acquire and analyze new knowledge. So for me – yeah, my blog is professionally focused. You won’t see posts about my vacations or good meals or movies – – there’s nothing wrong with that, but for me, it just wouldn’t keep me interested and blogging.
Oh, I changed the design, too — i had this really frothy japanese-themed look that just wasn’t pro enough… I wanted slick and so forth, but you can be the judge. I’ll post a screenshot of the old interface and explain later.
Now for the snarky comments back from my friends on Facebook when I start promoting my sincere (and to many, probably extremely boring) posts. I can take it. I can blog about it, I guess, too.