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isn't quite ashamed enough to present

jr conlin's ink stained banana

:: Breaking Rules

If you blog journal on-line, you might wish to read today’s Alertbox, Weblog Usability: The Top Ten Design Mistakes, wherein i discover that i break damn near every single rule.

Yes, i know i’m supposed to create well balanced, SEO compliant, simplified pages containing easily consumable, directed information, but what fun is that?

No, really. Look, my blog is my personal page. It exists principally for my benefit since i enjoy writing. Yes, i’m fully aware of the fact that future employers will find this page and determine if i live or die by it, and frankly, those are folks i don’t want to work for anyway. (Look, if they’re going to make a decision about my eligibility as a system architect based of my annoyance with Quicktime or reminiscing about old toys, i’m screwed. It also means that they’re not looking at the projects i worked on or asking me questions about design decisions, which scares me about the folks they have already hired.)

So, although i happily agree with far too many alertbox postings than is probably healthy for me, i’m drawing exception with that post.

There is no author biography
i know all about myself, thank you. What? Look, i said this is a page pretty much for me. The fact that you’re also somewhat entertained and possibly educated is just gravy. (For some reason, i feel like i should be narrating Fat Albert right now…)

There is no author photo
Ok, actually, there is. It’s the group photo over on the right. But i don’t make myself very prominent because i like to think the folks commenting here are just as much a part of this as i am.

i have nondescript post titles
Boy, By Golly do i. i have bad jokes, horrible puns and general non-sequitors as my post titles. That’s because they entertain me. Want to know what the post is actually about? Read the first paragraph. (Yeah, i know. It’s one of the oldest journalism cliches, but i really do try to follow at least that one) That paragraph is also included in the feeds.

Don’t want to waste time reading that paragraph? Then why the hell did you subscribe to this blog? Seriously. You’re time is obviously far more important than that.

<other counterpoint examples graciously removed.>

You see, the article assumes that a blog should be the same thing as a website/magazine/journal. It’s not. If that were the idea, there would probably be thirty to forty times the number of HTML design, PHP tricks and Perl hacks pages there are today, and far less folks actually reading them. While delightfully informative, articles like that are dead dull.

Blogs, as far as i’m concerned, are like the “Other Interests” section of your resume. Everyone puts down stuff like “Photography” or “Mountain Climbing” because nobody really wants to put down they’re interested in 80’s nighttime soap reruns or Punky Brewster cosplay. Blogs are an outlet. They’re fine the way they are because they’re not a full website. They’re letters from home.

Blogs are the free verse, fusion jazz of the Internet that nobody really likes but generally tolerates. They are the Open Mike Night of the new millennium. Besides, there are well established, editorially governed outlets for professional versions of common topics, and nobody seems to mind.

Yeah, my blog is crap. It’s horribly unusable.

Thank you.

Blogs of note
personal Christopher Conlin USMC memoirs of hydrogen guy rhapsodic.org Henriette's Herbal Blog
geek ultramookie

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