Atishay Jain
Atishay Jain
2016-11-01T00:00:00+00:00

The first output of every computer program has traditionally been hello world. That feels like the right way to restart a blog. I have had a website and blogs at multiple times in the past. While resurrecting a website and a blog for myself, I have had some questions that you non-blogger should ask yourself:

Why blog? Why now? What has changed?

Blogging is one of the corner stones of the wild west of the Internet. The brave would venture out and publish pieces of their writing online. Free for anyone to read, criticize, to copy and redistribute (You would never have resources to pull down via the DMCA in case of a theft even after it was enacted). Blog were sources of Internet fame that would inspire the new online entrants to continue to deal with all the troubles for blogging. There were many troubles. Troves of hackers looked at ways to get into your servers, to make a name for themselves by defacing your website or use it as a part of their botnet. The Internet has always been relentless with the weak and maintenance of the blog has always been trouble. The fashion keeps changing as do the requirements of the browsers from higher resolutions to mobile screens, from skeumorphic to flat designs and from plain HTML to server side generation and then to client side rendering. The old theme you picked up from your blog from a gratuitous designer who was looking for a name for himself dies pretty often leaving a defaced website for you to clean up. The platforms change, so do the people but the blog still requires constant effort. It is easier to delete the blog with no entries for more than a year than to maintain it. And now you have places like Facebook to eat out most of the content you wanted to post.

Then why blog now? Because the world has changed. Gone are the peak days of blogging. Personal blogs are personal again. There is no more peer pressure to update everything. That pressure moved from blogs to Facebook and then died when Facebook became creepy. You can now blog with your own will and at your own pace making sure that the writing makes you feel good. The troves of hackers are still there though their focus is now on greener pastures. You don’t get credits for taking down atishay.me and the one server is now not very useful in the botnet where a single script can give you thousands of light bulbs that glow on your command. Blog platforms have matured to be almost hacker proof. I host this static website generated by a static generator at Google Cloud and can be assured that security is being taken care of by Google. Hosting has become cheaper. Cheap enough for me to host the static assets with the blog and be safe from the mercy of the host for the images that my design requires. I am still at the mercy of fashion but unfashionable is not as bad as not working.

There is more need for blogging now than ever before. The distribution platforms that challenged blogging are too focused on money. They sell your posts for ads and earn by ruining the experience of your readers. Any website that was hosted 10 years ago and has remained unchanged would be many times faster than the best news website that is more modern. The performance bar for entry has fallen. Blogging is easier, faster and more fun than ever before. There is no gatekeeper pushing you to post more. The blogs today are more private than the most private conversation on the spied upon messaging apps.

With the breath of freedom, I am happy to be back. Hope to continue posting.

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