Changes Coming
Changes Coming
2005-10-22 16:58:07 by Andrew Hitchcock G+
Some changes are coming to my website, but first a little history. Originally my website was just intended to explain my t-shirts to classmates. I didn't even have a domain yet, so you had to go to 24.20.153.67 on some funky port to even get there. A few months later I bought a domain name to use for e-mail, and then a few weeks after that I switched my website to my domain. I started adding more content and I used this blog area (I called it 'news' back then) to announce the new content. After a while I started posting boring life stories. I always liked the idea of a journal, but I could never stay up to date. I type a lot faster than I can write, and the website was an easy place to store the information, so ended up just using this as a public journal. Now, however, I find that my past e-mails and IM logs are a doing a good job archiving my life and day to day activities. Plus, now that I have Spotlight, I can easily search through past IMs to find what I'm looking for (although, Spotlight could use snippets). Anyway, since my website was made from scratch, I have to write all the features I want. At one point I decided I needed RSS, so I wrote a small RSS script. That created another problem, because then I needed a way to link to posts. I was lazy, so on the huge page of past posts, I just added a little anchor text to each entry and linked to that. When someone would click to read more in their RSS reader, they would have to load a huge page which would then jump to their post. It wasn't ideal, but it worked for the time. Now, my quest for more readers and in-links has spurred me to make more site improvements. Tuesday, in preparation for the BigTable talk, I updated my script to allow links to individual blog posts. I had to remember how my big, uncommented index script worked, but that was easier than I anticipated. I also changed the links in my RSS feed to point to the new page. It worked. I've gotten quite a few links to my overview of the talk (including from the official Google Reader blog). I also got rid of the music albums that were on the right and the random quotes at the bottom of the page. Now, the page should be exactly the same every time someone visits... unless I have actually changed content. I figured I should give Google and other search engines a little hand by removing it (although, I'm sure they have ways to differentiate between content and excess stuff like that). Also, with less random data, their BigTable database should compress slightly better. I recently read about the most common weblog mistakes and so far I've fixed two of the five I was violating (that list prompted me to add the new About Me page). A few more violations will probably be fixed in time. I have a few more updates planned, but some of the ideas require a bigger overhaul of the site (which is probably a good idea). Keep an eye out for more small, evolutionary changes in the near future.
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