fuzzy notepad

[blog] Something new

Do you remember LiveJournal in its heyday? It was glorious. Built like a hacker’s hobby project, with all manner of little hidden treasures. Multiple avatars that use keywords so you can swap them out retroactively. A threaded comment system that still defies most competition. Site-wide banning, originally available only via a text-only admin console. A DSL for styling your blog thing however you want! It introduced OpenID; it was probably one of the first sites to really embrace RSS.

Now, though, none of this is particularly impressive. LiveJournal is far from being the only kid in town, and since it was sold to an already increasingly-irrelevant Six Apart and then some obscure Russian media company, it’s fairly well stagnated. More effort is spent on micro-promotions than actual functionality. LiveJournal is now optionally a client for Twitter and Facebook, rather than standing on equal footing as with OpenID or (gasp!) being the server. LJ’s own OpenID server support is some of the weakest I can name. LJ ran out of good ideas long ago, and now it’s just running on inertia.

A sad tale, sure. But on a more personal note, LJ is just not fun for me to use any more. I’m a hacker, and I like fiddling with things, and LJ just feels like a huge wall between my content and the world. I really just want to write some text and broadcast it to all who wish to read it.

And so, I depart LJ to do exactly that. This blog is stored in git, formatted as Markdown, and built into mere static pages by a few small Python scripts.

The comments, alas, are powered by Disqus. I apologize profusely for this, to those of you who would actually care. I thought long and hard about this, but ultimately I came to the realization that my blog is about things I want to say, not so much what others say in response, and so it shouldn’t really matter what the commenting mechanism looks like. If you don’t want to allow the necessary JavaScript but you really have something to say, you can always be old-school and email me.

Now, then. I’ve spent far too long just nitpicking the design of this thing (which I intend to finish up and apply to veekun proper, eventually). Let’s see if this legitimately makes me more interested in blogging.

If you like when I write words, you can fund future wordsmithing (and other endeavors) by throwing a couple bucks at my Patreon!

(illus. by Rumwik)