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Semiformalishmaybe

More Thoughts on changing how I blog

I'm thinking more about a sidepoint mentioned in my last post; maybe I should change how I blog. I have about 3150 entries in my main blog and a few mostly-quiet side-blogs. Right now the main blog covers everything from my personal life and struggles to the most abstract of philosophy, with occasional bits on linguistics, food, and science. I've hoped that the mix would help avoid the separation of bits of myself and keep it clear that people can live in the real world and also be thinking about big ideas. It's also been convenient; I don't need to do separate entries for various topics. It may have been bad for quality though, in that everything I write about is very casual and when I promise to write about something, it's more a statement of intent than a commitment; it also means that when I have the urge to write, the silence is filled just as well (for me) with talk about my emotions as about more intellectual things. It's also meant that I never had to try to pay much attention to my audience. All of these things are two-sided, and I think I'd like to become (moderately) more prominent and take the sharing of ideas more seriously, which means changes.

What I have:

  • A virtual server that I have complete control over, and the programming/sysadmin expertise needed to make use of that
  • A software platform I wrote that hosts the main version of my blog, which can currently sync things over to livejournal, and also provides its own RSS/Atom feeds. It can do threaded discussions too, but I turned comments off for now because I was getting a lot of spam
  • One permanent account on LJ, which currently acts as a mirror of my blog (and is currently the only place where comments can reach me)
  • A moderate amount of readers, probably only a few of which are (still) interested and most of whom I've met socially and are just reciprocating with my reading them
I'm wondering whether I'm better off with two blogs or three. Having personal things in one blog and everything about society/politics/science/philosophy in the other would be pretty easy and would never leave me scratching my head as to where a given post (or paragraph) belongs. If I did this, I'd probably devote the LJ account to this (not sure if I'd do a grand purge of old entries or not). The other option would be to try to split politics and philosophy (not sure where political philo0sophy would go), lumping the rest with politics and making the philosophy blog much more involved (and probably requiring its readers know more philosophy, or be interested in learning about it).

This isn't just about readers; having those blank spaces that I want to fill between LASTENTRY and now will pull me to write more about some topics and change how seriously I write about them. If nobody shows up to read the posts, that's a bit disappointing but still ok. I would like more of a podium from which to speak, and would like to get as involved with shaping the secular community as much as an introvert like me can manage (which is certainly less than most of the speakers I saw this weekend, but a lot more than I've done so far).

If I can swing this, maybe I can also get in the habit of teaching programming, unix, and similar; I've spent the last few months developing materials for that.

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