Reflections on the Year of the Blog
I’ve been rambling inanely on blog.crossedstreams.com for a year now, and it seems like an opportune time to briefly reflect on the experience.
Here’s some figures, to start with.
- Posts: 61. (about 4.5 posts per month for thirteen months)
- Genuine Comments: 52.
- Spam Comments: 5,337. (Thanks Akismet, you rule!)
- Feed Subscribers: 27. (My subscribers also rule!)
- Most Visits in a Day: 75.
- Total Visits: 3,556.
Here’s some highlights.
- I’ve helped out a bunch of people from all over the world (and many of them took a moment to thank me, which is awesome).
- I participated in (possibly even started?) an internet meme.
- I recorded the ups and downs of my first year of doing an MSc for posterity.
- I didn’t annoy anyone or get flamed.
And some stuff I learnt.
- How to use WordPress. It was kinda clunky when I first started but the current version is a joy to use. The plugins I use (I use Feedburner feeds, Akismet spam filtering, Google Code Prettify, Google Analytics and Google Sitemaps, plus others) are totally transparent – they just work. Even the update process is a one-click thing now. Although I can’t help the cold sweat when I do that click, even though I have backups…
- How to use Google Analytics. I pay nothing, but I have a toolkit telling me what pages people are looking at, where my viewers are in the world, what the trends are… I even have instant access to the complete historical record of that information – right back to last October. Just awesome.
- How to use Feedburner. Takes the load of providing feeds off my site (OK, so that’s not really a problem with 27 subscribers I’ll grant you) and gives me some idea of how many subscribers there are and which posts get clicked through.
- How to set up the blog.crossedstreams.com subdomain. I knew about DNS beforehand, but it was an fascinating experience to watch as this incredible global phone book lurch into action at my command. I have renewed respect for the genius of Paul Mockapetris in coming up with something so simple and yet so powerful.
The views expressed here are the personal views of the author.