5 Years of Blogging
Today marks the 5th anniversary of this blog. It's hard to believe I've been doing it this long, and writing something new most those many weeks. So, I think I'll take a moment and reflect on the last half decade.
The blog has definitely grown to more than what I'd thought it was going to be. I'd originally intended for it to be a place where I could post short entries without doing any real research on what I was writing about, a place to rant and rave without soiling my main site, which I'd intended to keep updating regularly. It hasn't really worked out that way. The blog has pretty much taken over the site. My entries range from the short rants I'd originally intended, to multi-page, well researched articles. Now I'm doing good if I update the old static portion of this site once per year. (It's official - my blog is more important than my static pages. The Google PageRank for the home page of the static site is 3, while the PageRank for the blog home page is 4.)
If there's one overarching theme that I think I've focused on the most, I'd have to say that it's skepticism. Whether discussing religion, politics, or debunking urban legends, my main focus has been trying to determine the truth about those issues. I haven't been entirely dispassionate, but I haven't really ranted and raved as much as I'd expected I was going to (maybe that's why my blog isn't as popular as certain other sites, or, at least, that's what I'll keep telling myself).
If I may say so, I think the weekly practice has improved my writing somewhat. I'm still a little rushed posting some entries, so there are still plenty of typos and places where my wording could have been better. But looking back over some of my older entries, I see a lot of places where I'd change them if I were to post them today.
Actually, looking over the past entries, I'm a little surprised at the quantity of output. I thought it might be kind of neat to throw together a compendium of all my entries and publish it through Lulu (even if noone else wanted to buy it, at least I'd have a nice printed and bound copy). So, I started copying and pasting all of my entries into a book, and it ended up being over 800 pages long (10 point Times New Roman on 5.5" x 8.5" pages with 0.5" margins). Granted, some of that is comments left by others, but I hadn't realized I'd written so much.
So, let's do some quick tallies. My total number of blog entries (excluding this one) is 332. As of today, I've received 351 legitimate comments and 1 legitimate trackback (assuming I haven't missed deleting any spam). Someone like PZ Myers may post more entries than that in a single month, and get more comments than that for a single entry, but I'm pretty happy with it. I still get excited every time I get an e-mail telling me that a new comment's been posted (though with the amount of spam comments, I don't get super excited until I can tell the comment's legitimate). I even have at least one semi-regular reader who's not my mom.
I suppose I ought to list a few highlights from the past five years worth of entries. So, in chronological order, here are a few posts that either I like quite a bit myself, or that have gotten quite a bit of traffic (or both).
- A Meandering Tale About Fundamentalism This is the entry that started it all. Technically, I had two entries before this, but they were basically just announcements that I was starting a blog.
- Probability Disproves Evolution, or Bees Can't Fly This isn't a very long entry, and it doesn't get a whole lot of traffic, but I like it.
- Physical Comparison of Humans to Other Animals I used to have the impression that us humans were physically pathetic compared to other animals, and it was our ingenuity that was responsible for our success. But really, we're fairly average, and even excel at some things.
- Knowledge for Knowledge's Sake Very short, but I really like it.
- Creation Museum/Creationist Rule of Thumb with the 2nd Law of Thermodynamics Although it doesn't get much traffic now, this was one of my first entries that brought in a lot of readers (mainly because I advertised it on a blog carnival).
- My Hundredth Blog Entry & An Announcement It took me a little while to get the courage to post this one - this was the entry where I came out with my atheism.
- A Skeptical Look at Masai Barefoot Technology Shoes This is far and away my most popular blog entry.
- Review of the Lucy's Legacy Exhibit at the Houston Museum of Natural Science This was pretty popular for a while when the exhibit was still in Houston.
- When Will There Be an Aircraft in Every Garage? An entry where I brought to of my passions together - aviation and skepticism.
- How to Spot an E-mail Hoax Everyone should read this.
- The Universe Is Big Go to this entry and click on the picture. It's worth it.
- War on Christmas Actually, I'm proud of the little graphic on that one - I stole the Santa, but did the cross hairs myself.
- Review of Expelled: No Intelligence Allowed A review of a truly horrible 'documentary'. It's the only topic on this blog that's gotten me angry enough to drop the F-bomb (and after reading that entry again, it was entirely deserved).
- Origin of Arabic Numerals - Was It Really for Counting Angles? This one gets a lot of visitors every month.
- Ray Comfort - Still Ignorant on Evolution Out of all the times I wrote about Ray Comfort, I think this is the best.
- Interstellar Potatoes Because I really, really like potatoes.
- Response to Anti-Liberal Article by Gary Hubbell This is probably the most popular of my political entries.
- The Texas Republican Platform, or Why I'm Not a Republican combined with The 2010 Texas Republican Platform I don't think people realize just how wacky the Texas Republican Party is.
As to where the blog's going in the future, I think I've pretty much found my rhythm, so I don't expect there to be much change. I'll keep on looking skeptically at religion, debunking urban legends, and spending more time than I should on the creation/evolution controversy. Hopefully I'll come up with some new posts that can educate some people, and maybe if I'm lucky, I'll even pick up a few more regulars.