Some thoughts on re-reading my blog archives from 15 years ago:
- It’s all very low-tech. At the time it was just a manually-updated page, so there were no permalinks, comments, categories, tags, RSS feeds or anything like that. My blog posts didn’t even have titles. Just a date and time. Over the course of the first year, I wrote a little program to help manage my posts, so I was able to gradually incorporate some of these features, and eventually I just switched to Movable Type where it was all provided for me.
- The content is all muddled together in a very haphazard fashion. I would often write a long diary entry and then dump a few unrelated links (the vast majority of which I imagine are now broken) at the end as part of the same post. All very unstructured, there was clearly no intention to provide a searchable archive for future generations to enjoy, it was just for the now.
- By looking at the timestamps on the entries I can see that I’d often stay up until 2am for no particular reason. I remember that during the first six months I had a lot of connections in the US blogosphere (and yes, I use that term ironically) so I imagine I stayed up late chatting with them on AIM.
- I was an incredibly self-centred, ill-informed, sexist arsehole. Doubly baffling when you think that Karen was somehow attracted to me. I guess she saw through all my bullshit to the potentially-decent guy underneath. When posting news articles (often from the now-defunct Ananova) I’d add my own thoughts and opinions, and politically I was all over the shop. In a way, it’s sort of cute – the scattergun reaction of a young man who wasn’t trying to affiliate himself to any particular political party or movement, and judged each situation in isolation, resulting in a puzzling, usually self-contradictory jumble. The word whimsical used in its most literal sense seems appropriate here.
- I’d often write a lot of entries during the day, capturing my thoughts as and when they occurred to me, in a very twitter-esque way. I was clearly totally unconcerned about my employer finding out.
- While I would frequently bend the truth wildly for the sake of entertainment, there’s a great deal of honesty if you know where to look. The most significant and memorable events pass by completely unmentioned, but I can recognise them by what else is happening at the same time.
If you’re wondering where you can go to to view these archives, the answer is that you can’t. So deal with it, you stinky bastards.
Wow, a bit of 2002-Pete leaking out there.
You were and are a whimsical darling. Were we yet attached?
Not at first, but at the point where we attach, you can see my arseholishness diminish greatly.
Well that’s interesting, because I always think that you made/make me a better person, so it’s nice to think I helped you be a bit less of an arsehole.
I think that a big part of it was that I stopped viewing my readers as faceless entities who existed solely for me to sling verbal abuse at.
Interestingly, looking back to when D4D started, there isn’t *that* much of a difference from back then to now.
I *am* less ranty, and less prone to long posts, and probably a lot more chilled than I was fifteen years ago. (And frankly, how the *nuts* is it fifteen years?!?)
Life has changed massively over that time – relationships, locations, interests and so on, and I now drive rather than get trains for the most part, but the main personality stuff is pretty much unchanged. I’m not honestly sure if that’s a good or bad thing.
I think I was mostly just boring and without a meaningful “voice” in 2002. I still did lots of linking out to stuff too. It took a while to hit my stride too, by which point all my readers had long since disappeared. Go figure.
* “All” is used in a very small sense, of course.
I quite like that back then, the links and the diary entries could coexist so easily. Nowadays it seems so black and white.