What my blog is

I want my blog to be the hub of my online life. I’ve come back to using WordPress because I want to be able to show other people how easy it is to avoid the walled-gardens of Facebook, Twitter, et al. So I need to explain what I want my blog to be.

  1. A place to post reports, thoughts, photos, observations, etc. about what’s been going on in my life (i.e. what a blog usually is);
  2. A means of providing a feed of the posts;
  3. Somewhere to consume feeds from elsewhere (see my news page for how this is shaping up so far; it leaves a fair bit to be desired, but I’m working on that);
  4. In its capacity of a record of things, I want to be able to print yearly compendiums of all contents (might seem strange in this age of digitisation, but I do rather like a good solid shelf full of records — even if I never use them);
  5. Be my OpenID provider (this is working perfectly);
  6. I have a couple of other sites around, and I would ideally have their functionality within WordPress itself… this is probably the biggest problem I have at the moment.

Basically, I like Dave Winer’s idea of everyone having their own place to call home on the web, that doesn’t involve giving all their content to Facebook or whoever.

How far I am from doing all this: really, it’s the crappy photo management of WordPress that’s holding me back. I’ve got a couple of draft plugins that should fix this up (be able to change the date of uploads, for one thing!). The other thing I’d like — even though I realise that it’s acutally nothing to do with blogging and so doesn’t really belong in WordPress, but I would like it — is to be able to check my email from within this site (one of my other little hand-coded sites that I’ve got elsewhere is an email archiving thing that ends up producing a yearly LaTeX-formatted tome of all my emails).

(Anyway, I’m really only posting this to get things straight in my head, and there’s more to be said — where Wikimedia, OSM, etc. fit in, in this scheme, for instance — but it’s time to go. I have at least kept my one-post-per-day thing going for the third day in a row!)

Afternoon in the Office

Right. Well then.

My idea, this week, is to write more. So far, I have failed.

I have nothing to say. There is nothing going on, nothing worth talking about. But I want to write.

* * *

I have six weeks and two days to go at IBM. I’ve bought my train ticket, and started to pack up my belongings. I feel nothing much other than that I am marking time until I leave. Work drears on (if that’s a word; I’m not sure that it is) with excursions away from AIX to read about typography and distributed authentication (i.e. OpenID) punctuating my workdays. The view from my desk is unchanged, not even in that Canberran way of the trees turning orange in April, because this is Tuggers and no one plants deciduous trees here. I would take a photo, but a) I don’t have a camera (more on that in a moment, however); b) I’m probably not allowed to anyway, for some daft security reason; and c) it’s a silly thing to do, and posting the photo here would be even sillier.

Not that I particularly mind people thinking I’m silly; of course I don’t: I write a blog.

Not that by writing a blog I intend to pronounce what I write worthy of being read. I do not. I most certainly and unequivocally do not. However, I do want to write more, and more regularly. I started this blog when I was actively working with wood on a daily basis, and so I had something to write about. Now that I’m stuck in the rotten world of IT on a daily basis, I do not feel inspired. Hence posts such as this one. Sorry.

Nevertheless, I am soon — thanks to Tom‘s return from the States next week — to be the owner of a new Nikon D60.The Nikon D60, soon to be my first \'proper\' digital camera. Therefore I am one further step down this long road of commitment to technology, and not thinking that I’ll chuck it all in to fuck off to the bush somewhere. Oh dear. What am I doing? I don’t know, but I will be taking more photos, and posting them here.

I have always been attracted to the idea that one can be quite out in the open and public about what one does. I remember reading some strange geeks’ diaries in 1996 or thereabouts, and marveling at their unabashed exposition of their lives. It’s not about having anything interesting to say or reveal, or wanting anyone to read my words — but just dumping these thoughts out there in public view.

I’m sure there’s more I could say about cameras and blogging or waistcoats and slippers, and the absurd split that I feel between the two, but I am rather thinking that I’ve gone on quite long enough already.

More tomorrow…