Retro-active content

Just finished importing two old Tumblr blogs (each from roughly 4-5 years ago), one under my name and one … not.

So there’s suddenly a lot more content at this blog, in 2014-2015 !

(of course, it lacks tagging etc, but, it exists … all part of my current plan to aggregate bits and pieces of my digital life into this WordPress blog …)

Continuing thoughts about the “static blog”

After some deliberation, I feel there’s no point in either (1) keeping a separate static-only blog and this blog, or (2) keeping two separate WordPress blogs, because

  • I don’t have the mind space for that. It’s straightforward to have one place for everything
  • If I did want to have a place for code snippets today, they would either belong in a shared dynamic environment, such as or nextjournal.

So, I’m going to rely on Categories to keep different posts siloed away, and see how that goes …

Previous, unpublished post:

(Found this in my drafts folder, might as well throw it out …)

I’m still thinking through this … when I first looked around, I thought Tumblr was a good candidate for the sort of “snippet-heavy” (gists, quotes, screenshots) that I anticipate throwing into my static blog.

Given that WordPress is actually something I use (for this blog, right here!) and the fact that a new “block-based” editor/design just rolled out, I’m now wondering if I should import my existing Tumblr into a new WordPress blog and just use that instead.

It’ll mean I’ll have two separate WordPress blogs … but that doesn’t seem too bad. This raises the obvious question of … why not have just one blog? Well, because they seem different (in my head, anyway): one is more of a “semi-organized summary of life and interests”, while the other is a sort of “scrapbook of anything connected to programming, computing, commentary and snippets, bits of explorations”.

Anyway, I’ll decide something soon (I hope!)

Short-form blog posts

It has to be okay to write one-paragraph posts, otherwise I’ll never end up getting what’s in my head out somewhere.

I just don’t happen to be an essay-writing kind of person, I can’t bring myself to write long blog posts, it isn’t something that comes out of me naturally, seems like a lot of work to make happen, and what’s the point1 of second-guessing myself or waiting till I have the “right amount” to write, when the whole idea of having a blog in the first place (for me, at least) is to de-clutter my mind and (secondarily) to share what I’m thinking with anyone who cares?

There has to be something between the pithiness of Twitter and the multi-page topical essays that other people seem to favor … for me, it’s a 1-3 paragraph thought form, and I’m content to reuse this blog to host them.

  1. On the downside, this may be perceived as spamminess, but that’s for you to decide. I guess every post should be greater than 280 characters 🙂

Revisiting blog post categories

I’ve been writing three monthly posts for a while now (a couple of years, maybe?): a monthly summary of what I’ve been up to, and then two sets of “interesting links”.

These have been (arbitrarily, the first time, and then carried on ever after) separated out roughly into Programming/Math/Science, and everything else.

This dichotomy bothers me — just have one bucket for “stuff I found interesting this month” so I’m just going to have one monthly round-up of links.

I do have a static weblog as an outlet for sharing links/extracts/snippets, so that can still count as a “programming-only channel”.

A history of personal (static) blogs

I’ve accumulated a few static blogs over the years, each starting out, running for a while, and then petering out.

The first version, with Hakyll

The second version, with Jekyll

The third version, with Hugo (still alive, apparently!)

A good question at this point is, why did I ever bother, and why do I want anything other than this (WordPress) blog?

If you go through the content in the old repos I pointed to above, most of it was sort of “snippets”, notes about this or that, fleeting documentation, little experiments.

This sort of stuff is both too noisy (I feel) in the middle of regular summary updates, and yet something I like to have around. So, meh, I can do some sort of fancy tag-based separation in WordPress, or … I can just dump it all into a different place and never worry about the overlap.

Also, Cryogen, the Clojure-based static site solution I’m using for this, seems cool. So there’s that.

Note: Another good question here is: what should I do about all the previous existing content? There’s actually a ton of markdown-posts in each “version” of the blog(s), so I should eventually migrate all of that over.

Resolutions on Writing

Around 2013, I decided to try a few therapeutic writing exercises, and got hooked. Since then I’ve written a lot for fun, though almost entirely pseudonymously.

I’ve written poems off and on at, and variously sized “flash fiction” at (the site shut down some time ago), and for a while posted snippets and rants on Tumblr. All of this was under some made up name; I don’t think I could’ve ever written anything under my real name.

About a year and a half ago, I started writing (and still do) one rambling bag of seven hundred and fifty words (inspired by Of course, this isn’t shared either, just written and thrown away, which is really the whole point.

I did want to push myself to write more under my own name, but this seemed (1) scary, and (2) pointless. Eventually I started the habit of monthly posts, a kind of “curation” attempt.

Right now there are two of these: one focussed on topics relevant to programming or math or science, etc., and one for everything else. The distinction is a bit silly, but it sort of makes sense, and I’ll keep it that way.

I also write once a month on stuff that happened in my life — this avoids the tendency to post frequent status updates, but, eh, I won’t say anything more about that.

It takes me a while to get to the point, and I’ve buried the lede here. My resolution for next year is to write more frequently, and share more of what I write, though exactly what form that takes, I’m not sure.

Most of what I have to say about the world in general ends up being either unnecessarily controversial, or completely boring. So I don’t want to write long blog posts about that. Perhaps I’ll just share more random snippets that I’ve collected over time, with some commentary. Or perhaps the solution is to weave it into less-frequent long-form writing. Dunno.

Some of this has been brought on by NaNoWriMo being round the corner, and I’m not sure if I’ll be able to kill it, but I’m sure going to try. Last year I ended up writing something small and very weird; this time I’m hoping to write something more normal … we’ll see.