Yesterday I attended the last day of the blog conference held this week. There have been numerous posts covering the event so I'm not going to go into what happened there.
I do want to share my thoughts related to my writing on this blog however.
I have been writing on this blog for about a year and I like to have a place where I can jot down things I believe could be of interest and importance to others. I don't post too often, maybe 2-3 posts a month. Some of the posts have had more than 1000 views, but on average there's a couple of hundred views over time.
Regarding the blogging, I'm at a crossroad. Has the time come to burry this thing or should I continue to write at my own pace when I feel like it? I don't have an answer yet.
Most of the content on this blog are posts that I have spent significant time to write up. Over the last year a few product release posts and other rumor crap has sneaked in, but I try to avoid these.
I love my work; I'm a passionate geek and spend a significant portion of my time on technology related stuff. Time is unfortunately a finite resource. To write high quality posts takes a lot of time. At least for me it does. My wife and 3 kids (12, 9 and 4) deserve their share of that limited resource as well.
So while I walked out after the blogger gathering I couldn't stop questioning myself;
- Why do I write on my blog?
- What do I want to achieve?
- Do I want to invest more or less time in blogging?
The latter is obviously related to the two former, but anyhow. With those thoughts in the back of my mind and while listening to the Biography of Einstein on my IPod, I took a wrong turn and got stuck on Ayalon. I decided to let Einstein wait until the morning and ponder on the future of this blog. (I'm listening to pod casts and audio books on my way to and from work) Click here for a list of my favorite pod casts.
45 minutes and only a few kilometers ahead I had reached my verdict on the following issues:
I'm not writing and will not be writing for fame. I am interested in how many people read my blog and what comments they leave, but I don't posses an exhibitionist gene that I sense in a lot of blogs. (Or maybe I do, but I just don't know it.)
I'm not writing for money. I don't believe I have the skills or would want to invest the effort required to try to make money from my blog. I actually like to write, and I love to program. But the thing that fascinates me about programming is the design and thought process and the intellectual challenge. I don't have a very sophisticated way with words, so prose and casual writing is mostly off limits.
I'm partially writing for my resume. Not that I'm looking for a job, but I believe that if a future employee can look at my blog over the past years he can get better insight into who I am, what my interests are and if I would be a natural fit for this hypothetical employer. Again, I'm not looking for a job! (We're actually in the process of hiring more people here at Renaissance and there are exciting times ahead.)
I am mostly writing about issues that I feel passionate about. I also try to write up posts related to development that I wish someone else had already written. That way I wouldn't have had to waste time to solve the issue.
I want to give something back to community. I can't imagine working in an environment without Internet access. I gain tremendously from other peoples' blogs. It only seems fair that I make an effort to pay something back to the community.
At this point I figured I had the first two points mostly covered. The remaining question was now whether I should invest more time in the blog. Less time would just mean stop blogging all together. While going through the list of why I do blog, I came to the realization that the resume part was actually an afterthought. That section should probably be titled social reach-out or something like that. I'm not surrounded by geeks. Despite the fact that my wife will silently suffer through my excavation of walking parse trees in my latest CodeRush plugin I don't really have many people to share my inner geek with.
That led to the conclusion that the only real reason for me to continue to write on this blog is to give something back to the community. But with the current number of subscribers on the blog where I guess I am topping the view stats, it's a little frustrating. Maybe spending time on an open-source project would be better for everyone.
I'm going to defer the decision by a few days. I actually have an idea for a theme for a series of posts, but I will let the idea mature a little before committing to it.
P.S this is me.