Home One Year On: Part 2

One Year On: Part 2

In my previous post, I wrote about my early blogging efforts in March 2002 and the birth of Read/Write Web just over 1 year ago. In this post I review the past year and pick out some highlights. I’ll finish with some thoughts about what the next year may bring.

Highlights of the past 12 months

April 2003: My inaugural post was titled The Read/Write Web. It outlined the manifesto I’ve promoted ever since then: the Web should be read/write, not read-only.

My third post, RSS – Subscribing to Topics, began my fascination with topic-mapping in blogging. 

May 2003: Web browsers were a hot topic for me during this month – browser/editors (as Tim Berners-Lee originally wanted them to be) and the future of IE.

June 2003: I wrote a series of articles on The Universal Canvas.

July 2003: My first link from an A-List blogger, Clay Shirky, came from this article: Weblogs should be topic-first, not author-first.

Also in July, I coined the phrase Web of Ideas. It conveys a huge part of what the Web means to me – to “discover, create and share ideas”. I later used this as the title of, and modus operandi for, my linkblog. I wrote a follow-up piece: Web of Ideas II.

August 2003: Two of my favourite posts from the past year are art/technology mixes: In XML did Kubla Khan – XML as Literature and The Whiteness of the Whale – the Semantic Web. I enjoyed writing these, as they’re a blend of my Arty background (I’m an English Lit major) and my techy bent. I must write more like this…

Later in August, I wrote up an idea called Microcontent Wiki. It was about how to track a conversation that occurs in the comments on someone else’s weblog.

September 2003: I converted to a CSS-based layout using XHTML.

On 30 September I got my first link from Dave Winer, which was a big deal to me because he’s been a big influence on my read/write philosophy.

October 2003: My post titled Select Mode: Publisher best represents this month for me. There was a “broadcasting vs conversation” meme going around at the time and the point I was trying to make was that I use my weblog first and foremost as a publishing medium.

November 2003: Inspired by Erik Benson, I signed up for Nanowrimo – an annual contest where participants have to write a 50,000-word novel in 30 days. I proceeded to bore my readers witless throughout November with updates from my novel. However, Nanowrimo was a fantastic experience for me. It was bloody hard work, but to actually complete a novel was a big thrill.

December 2003: Apart from recovering from Nanowrimo, I wrote a few posts on weblog ontologies and taxonomies.

January 2004: I came up with a concept called The Fractal Blogosphere. Inspired by Sir Tim Berners-Lee’s Fractal Web theory, it was a proposal for an alternative measurement of blogging to the Power Law. It got quite a bit of coverage in the blogosphere.

February 2004: I got all excited by the possibilites of Information Flow as a kind of bottom-up Knowledge Management.

March 2004: My most successful post yet, an interview with Marc Canter. It got Slashdotted, which caused a big spike in hits. But most importantly, it showed I have what it takes to be an ‘amateur journalist’. Now I’ve just got to work out how to get paid for doing it 😉

The Future

Content-wise, I can’t predict what the future of Read/Write Web holds. That’s what makes blogging so exciting! But there may be changes in infrastructure. I’m working on a re-design, with a new CSS layout and possibly a new weblog authoring tool (Movable Type). Stay tuned.

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