Wednesday, September 26, 2007

My Blogging Story

My Blogging Story begins a couple of years back with a friend telling me over the phone about this thing called MySpace he got invited to. He said it was cool cause you could write things and share them with your friends. So, he invited me and I started my first blog. Uncertain of what to do with a blog, and worried about privacy, I decided I would only post philosophical musings, not wanting to submit to some sort of narcissistic endeavor.

Realizing how easy it was to publish online for free, I started thinking that I should create a blog for my notes from classes and the papers I write. This way I could share them with others and point others to my work. Through a web search I stumbled upon Blogger and set one up.

Somewhere along the lines I got involved with Students for Environmental Action and became the club webmaster (with no webmastering knowledge whatsoever, but an eagerness to learn). I subsequently found out about RSS and decided that I hated email and listservs. Specifically I hate news and other writings being sent via listservs because I think the motivation to share is one born of a desire to have dialog, something that is very cumbersome via email, and especially listserv. So I created another blog for the club, and made it a collective blog by adding club members as authors.

Through the efforts for the SEA CoBlog, I found out about the Blogger hacking community. I specifically found out about some hackers creating ajax blog templates, making the interface lightning fast and smooth. After pondering the issue, I decided to try to turn a blog into a database (project still underway). The first application of this was the Manhattan Buyer's Guide, a project I had been working on over a year and had already created a static website for.

Extending that application, I wondered if a blog as a library catalog would be a far stretch. I played around with the idea of creating an annotated bibliography of the Dow Chemical Multicultural Resource Center (DowMRC) reference collection (project still underway). In the meantime I found out about someone already doing this with Wordpress, scriblio.

Learning from the experience with the SEA CoBlog, I began thinking that a blog would a good tool for management. It could make communication in a work environment transparent and inclusive, and it could give voice to certain entities and situations. So, I helped setup a blog for the DowMRC for exactly this purpose.

Lastly, I was invited to give a Techbytes Series talk about blogs. So, I created this blog to demonstrate the extension of a blog as a presentation tool, and to provide a resource for a vast array of tools and information that would not be able to be covered in a one hour talk.