My Blog is Still Dumb

7 years of blogging and my blog is still dumb. Yes, it has advanced beyond the horse and carriage days of 1998, when i had to manually enter the date onto each posting. And beyond 2002 when i had to manually enter the comments collected from emails. And yes, RSS feeds (2003) have helped others read my blog in a smarter way. But it is still dumb.

I guess we have evolved from the carriage to the automobile, but alas, it is a Model A Ford and not yet a smart BMW that tunes itself and tells the mechanic what is not functioning.

The year is 2005, and my blog should be a lot smarter than it is. Emergent software is out there, everywhere, but smart blogs are not. This is a shame. If i was geeky enough to program emergent software for my own blog, then here are some things that my blog should do:

– People should see who else is reading my blog at the moment. I have seen this on other web sites like but I dont see an easy way to add this function to my blog. Thats an easy one. I guess i could do that if i had the time.

– My blog should detect my mood swings and change colors and fonts to reflect that. Perhaps a link to a smart coffee maker would give some helpful input.

– My blog already detects who is tracking back and who is commenting on the posts, but that information should be feed into the lists on the sidebar – continually updating itself. I should not have to enter it myself – that is sooooo last year!!

– My “What i am reading” list is OK, but i still have to manually enter the books that i buy. It would be easier if my purchases on ebay and amazon could be automatically fed into a smart list on my blog. A little big-brotherish, perhaps. But then it should allow me the option of withhold the information if i want to, for example, hiding a birthday present for my wife. Actually, no. Amazon should give me that option when i buy it.

– My blog should track the life cycles of my posts – who tracked it, who commented on it while hosted on a different blog, how much response it received, and if it was positive or negative. And it should do the same for me when i link to someone’s post, or join a blog conversation in the middle – i should be able to track the history of the thought backwards and forwards. This shouldn’t be too hard. Each post has a unique address – it could also have a piece of code – a digital watermark of sorts, that could allow it to be found and tracked in an historical sequence.

When technology took a significant leap in 2002, I decided to stop my vintage blog and store it for posterity’s sake. It is parked at and it is worth visiting for a laugh. There are no comments on it apart from what i manually entered. One day my kids will think it as hilarious as a wind up gramaphone. Surprisingly, it still gets a lot of hits and made it to bloggerForum’s Top Sites for Week #4 (number 3, actually – not that i am counting) 3 months after i had stopped it.

My original blog, Andrews Tea Salon (1998) was hosted by Geocities. We lost the password and havent seen it for a few years. Pity.


Andrew Jones launched his first internet space in 1997 and has been teaching on related issues for the past 20 years. He travels all the time but lives between Wellington, San Francisco and a hobbit home in Prague.


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