New site, new blog

It's been several years since I blogged with some regularity and at least a couple of years since I last updated my personal website. So I'm starting a new one and throwing in the package a new blog too (this one). The reason I spent too long without doing both is the same as everyone else's: social network sites. 

Blogs had (have?) trackbacks, comments, blog rolls. All these features added a social layer on top of the blogosphere, but were a pain to set up and maintain. Twitter made too easy to just throw some idea out of the virtual window and build a social network around a profile. Linkedin promised to be the one-stop place for my professional identity, while Facebook would be my personal identity. 

The trouble with outsourcing this sort of information keeping is that you give away some control over information that is yours. That's fine, of course, until it isn't. It is mildly annoying that you can't retrieve your oldest tweets, but Techcrunch is the most recent voice of an increasing chorus raising the concern of letting companies decide what you can and can't say and calling for a (return to a) federated web. That means to have full control of your information, on private servers and your own domain.

All that lead me to decide that I want to take some of the control back. That does not mean that I'm deleting my profiles in every social network site (I might do it for a few... I'm looking at you, Orkut). It is still a pain to keep the social layer going on in blogs, so the idea is to use those services as pointers to information hosted here. Instead of writing a big post in Facebook, I'll just post in here and send an excerpt with a link to Facebook, Twitter, Google+. If any of these services die (and I assume most will), it won't take my information with it.

When you think about it, we sort of do this with personal photos - we keep them in our hard drives, DVDs or whatever kids are using to store GB of photos, and just send small-ish versions of them to social network sites. We don't even consider deleting the local copy after uploading it. But we seem to be okay with doing this with text. 

I'm keeping all the posts of the old blog separate from this one. I just checked, and the first post in there is from 2003, but I have even older ones in some backup around here (I think my very first blog post was around 2000, we even called them by their full name, weblogs). I'm sure I'm not impressing anyone with these numbers. Anyway, this one is a fresh start. Let's see how long it lasts. Oh, and I'll probably switch a lot between English and Portuguese. I find that some thoughts are better expressed in English. Go figure.

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This page contains a single entry by Ricardo published on August 4, 2012 9:10 PM.

Agents, Memory and Sitcoms is the next entry in this blog.

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