so this is christmas…

and what have I done?

OK. Couldn’t resist starting my blog this way. I think I’ve managed to avoid the wrath of the copyright lawyers of John Lennon’s estate though because it is a fair comment… what have I done?

Personally, it’s been a bit of a “steady as it goes” year. I’ve been working at the same job for this year as the last, but overall I’ve managed to improve my life in some ways… learned to cook more, and started asking myself the big questions like “What do I want to do with the rest of my life?”. I mean, when you’re about to age out of marketing’s “youth” bracket, it’s probably a good idea to have at least an idea of some answers at that point!

I keep on posting about this blog and how I intend to revive it or do something with it. Indeed, I think half the posts here are me musing what to do with it, and spitballing and then never following through. When I was a student this blog was basically a Lib Dem supporter blog with some half-hearted reviews of stuff and posts about physics as well mixed in, and then promptly I realized that a) partisan politics turns people off and b) partisan politics turns me off too. I have political views, but really there are many people doing that for a living and doing it far better than me so my views on things like the Middle East and Scottish independence are probably not that valuable.

Funnily enough though I had dinner with a friend a few nights ago, and I came back to this. I was a little bit drunk and probably most of what I said was bollocks (it often is… oh how often it is) but I do remember that I discussed starting a blog and putting useful stuff on it, and trying to go out into tutorials and public speaking and such from there. I found it interesting that I turned to this as I guess it’s been at the back of my head for some time.

Aside from one post about Drew Struzan posters that must have been picked up by Drew’s webmaster (it was shared and the analytics went insane), the most visited posts on here tend to be the one about upgrading Vulkan libraries, and how to turn RHEL 7 to CentOS 7. What my audience (such that it is) seems to be here for are those times when I solved a problem at work or elsewhere, and then blogged about it. It appears that I’ve had visitors from all over the world coming here looking for these things… so that’s probably what I should do much more of in future!

I guess at the moment I’m looking at my life and a lot of things and trying to figure out how to fix or improve them – and one of them is this blog. TheAnswers42.com has been my home for ten years now, and I’ve always been kicking around what to do with it really. From looking at the analytics of it, it seems people dig the howtos more than anything, so I think we’re going to do that in future.

I guess also with the Vulkan and GLFW howtos I’ve posted as well it’s pretty obvious I’m a hobbyist games developer, so there’s that. Also as being a devops ninja is my day job, I guess we can chat about that too. At the end of the day it seems like a crying shame that the blog’s been kicking about for a while and I keep on forgetting about it. I come back to it occasionally with posts like this saying “Hi blog, I forgot about you” and then promptly forget about it.

The interesting thing is: why? Well, I did some thinking about that and the only reason I guess is I fear looking like a bit of a jamoke by writing blog posts that’s been already covered. There could be a million posts out there already on “How to do X with Ansible” or OpenGL rendery stuff, and for a while I felt that there were already enough of those out there thus I didn’t really need to add my two cents on the topic.

Then again, I see many many different blog posts on the same topics anyway so perhaps adding to the noise surrounding something isn’t too bad. Besides, perhaps every other blog post on X topic is crap and mine is the one greatest explanation :P… or more realistically, perhaps I write the blog post that happens to make something click for someone where others didn’t. I like that thought, and indeed diversity of options is a very good thing.

So here’s to 2020: may this new decade bring more blog posts per year than the last one.

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