Welcome to the second decade of 11111001111. On September 30th, 1999, I installed a Perl-based "online journal" program and wrote the ultimate first blog post: "hey, this works!" Since then, I've made over a thousand posts, changed layout and style more than once, been in the Fargo Forum and Farked, and eventually completely moved away from a prepackaged software backend to something completely custom.
In fact, you might have noticed some minor changes in the site in the past couple days. This is because I'm on to iteration number six of 11111001111. This was a ground-up rewrite of the PHP code, going completely XML on the data storage. I'm a flatfile kinda guy; no databases yet. Anyhow, from the outside, the only new thing is a CAPTCHA on the commenting, and possibly some URL changes, but otherwise it's the same thing. On the back-end, though, I've upgraded some amazing features: I can preview now! It used to be that I had to code the HTML by hand, and once I hit post, it went live immediately, but now I have the ability to schedule posts for the future. I'm really moving into the twenty-first century now. I still have to do HTML by hand, though; WYSIWYG is still a pain. Yes, I know I'm sounding like Mr. Crochety Old Blogger, but ask yourself, how many other bloggers have passed the 10-year mark?
Part of the reason for the change is, up until now, those first blog posts of mine, back from 1999 to 2001, were more-or-less "lost": they didn't fit into the scheme of the blog stuff I had rewritten, so I let them disappear. I've often reminded myself, "11111001111 is the year 1999 in binary, and you claim to be blogging since the 20th century, but none of that is here." Well, now it is: I converted those old posts to the new format, and added another new feature: the "continue reading" tag, which lets me break up long posts. Just watch:
But you're not here to hear me brag about my coding excellence, are you? You want to know what's coming next. Answer: A metric crapload of the same stuff. Being able to schedule in the future will probably encourage me to post more; I've gotten in the habit, at other blogs, of working in chunks, writing a bunch of posts for one blog, meting them out over a few days, and them moving on to a different blog. I intend to continue the Number Posts, if only because a reader said they were enjoyable. The short-form Kottkesque "quick-links" will continue, despite my urges to post them at Metafilter instead, and I have long told myself to write more long-form Lileksque posts, so maybe I'll get up the gumption to write more about myself.
If you asked me, ten years ago, where I'd be, I know there's not a chance in hell I'd be anywhere close to the true outcome of the previous decade. The next decade will be even tougher, because in that time, all the kids (who of whom weren't even on my radar when the blog started) will have gone through teenagerhood and into adulthood, and beyond. I'll have had another decade of mad writing skillz under my belt, new technologies will present themselves and become the norm. Remember, in 1999, blogging as a form of media was very new, and barely registered on anybody's radar. Today, some would go so far as to say it's usurping the art of journalism as we've known it. There is no telling what another ten years will bring the world of media. Don't worry; I'm fairly certain I'll still be here.
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