Why things have been quiet here lately
If you are a regular reader of this blog you'll have noticed that things have been quiet here lately.
Part of this is that I've been busy, which has meant that I've had less time to write. I don't like having a growing backlog on content like this, it feels like mental clutter that eventually grows to a point where not clearing some of it out gets painful. And while my pain tolerance is higher than it used to be, I have a backlog higher than ever, with tens of thousands of words of unpublished content in drafts at the moment. There's a saying that goes something along the lines of "there's decades where nothing happens and months where decades happen". I feel like right now we are in the middle of such months where huge changes are happening and that's part of why I have wrote so much recently.
But the other part of this is that I've had part of my pipeline for publishing to this blog break. This has been due to some changes with installed software and how it interacts with the version control system I'm using (Git). This sort of mundane "bit rot" is all too common in the software world and at least in the case of my blog is something that I am partially responsible for. The technical setup of this blog is brittle in a way that the production ready software I write is not. When I make a production software system extreme efforts are usually placed into making the software as robust as possible. This is often a rather difficult task and there's a lot that goes into making a modern software deployment work in a dependable manner. For this blog I'm trying to make the writing be the main cause of my difficulty.
For me at least I was wanting to make sure that I got content up quickly because I thought the value in getting what I wanted to write up was more important than expending engineering effort to make more features for the blog. If you are a technical person I'd highly recommend that you get something relatively basic up and running and make some posts to that first1. If you do decide to do something more complex for the code that powers your blog then at least you'll have somewhere to write about that work as you do it. For a while in there I contributed a bit to another static site generation project because I wanted to be able to run my company website off it. This turned out to be a rather major time investment that yielded us almost nothing other than the contributions to that project.
Recently I've had a lot of time to think about things, I'm starting to actually understand the economic situation we are seeing worldwide and its just not what I originally thought. The lines of thought that I'd picked up from narratives have frequently been exceedingly wrong while things derived from more first principles approaches with data have tended to be far more accurate. This is something I'd like to write about, but first I have to actually spend some fixing up the code that makes these webpages.
When I say basic I don't mean bad, there's tons of people in tech these days who have this unhealthy mental model where they think fast is equivalent to doing things badly. What I mean to say is that there's plenty of relatively good open source blogging platforms out there, choose one and write some posts. Then if that is insufficient or annoying or whatever then start making your own plugin/platform/etc that does what you need or want. People will likely want to read about your experiences with these things. ↩