Someone once told me to have a purpose for everything I do. I believe that even out of our subconscious, everything we do as humans is for a purpose. Marla Gibbs quotes that:
I truly believe that everything that we do and everyone that we meet is put in our path for a purpose. There are no accidents; we’re all teachers - if we’re willing to pay attention to the lessons we learn, trust our positive instincts and not be afraid to take risks or wait for some miracle to come knocking at our door.
~ Marla Gibbs
I started blogging in 2011 because of my passion for technologies. My first blog (rexcorpcyber.net) was about offensive cyber security because I was a skiddie with a unidirectional thinking. I thought being a hacker was about breaking into things and I chose the dark path. With time, I found a need to acquire more skills to achieve complex intrusions and then I picked up books on algorithms and programming which in turn gave me a redirection.
I gained a partial online presence by blogging on how to do things. At this time, I only saw blogging as a thing to do because I enjoyed it. I had no ads at all on the blog because most ad sellers wouldn’t give a blog with illegal content a chance to publish ads for them. What I did with some other amateur bloggers was to feature on their blogs by re-writing what has already been written on my blog. They did the same with me and even as we pursued a good SEO, we never knew we were ruining our SEO reputation by having the same content across multiple sites. I’d thought if I could have another blogger come and reblog his posts on my blog, then for the bigger bloggers that wouldn’t do such, I could just copy their blog posts into my site. Plagiarism became my thing.
I started writing for infosec institute and part of the agreement stated:
- Plagiarism is strictly forbidden
- Do not repost your posts from here to your personal blogs until after month
It was until then I could take some time to reason that it was totally useless to have one exactly same content on multiple parts of the web. Even if I had written a featured post for another blog or for a company, the best I can do is reference is with a link and give proper attribution where due. Also, I understood copyright policies and what the creative commons license was about. This made me abandon my old ship (blog). I closed down rexcorpcyber.net and ended the blogging part of my life. At this point, I’ve put my computing into better use by building secure software and applications.
About 8 months later, I became what you call a full-time software engineer and it has been a part of me to surf the web always and find ways I can improve myself as it is till date. Then I came across Joerg Mueller’s blog post on Why all programmers should blog. That gave me a 20% conviction to pick up my old blogging habits again. My skeptical nature didn’t make me totally convinced with just that. It was until I started watching the Star Trek series again in 2014 and I noticed captain Kirk had his log where he logged his experiences I realized how important (b)logs are. If you saw Star Trek then this sounds familiar
Captain’s log, stardate 41153.7. Our destination is planet Deneb IV
James Kirk kept log of his experiences and destinations as a Captain of the Enterprise. Now I’m a captain of my own software development adventure and I think it is essential that I keep logs as well. Blog was coined from WebLog. Our technology age provides the internet for us to share our logs with everyone and that’s just what most blogs are about.
I’ll point out some major reasons why I blog today.
- To keep a record of what I’ve done and how I successfully implemented something programmatically
- To help others who may have the same problem find an easy solution
- To keep myself busy with something interesting
Keeping records from my first point does not include bookmarking links as blog posts. Scott Hanselman pointed this in his blog post about keeping your blog from sucking. I learnt from that post that if I come across a post or web page I like, I should make use of delicious and make my blog posts rather on interesting things which I’ll call heroin content.
I started this blog on WordPress because it is a very easy platform for blogging but this year I moved it to Jekyll. It doesn’t matter what platform you may be on, blogging is one essential part of you if you’re exploring anything at all (not just software development).
To find more useful information on becoming a better blogger. Some of the great people in the Software Industry have dropped some articles you’ll find useful.
John Sonmez is presently taking an email course on blogging which can be found on http://devcareerboost.com/blog-course/ . I’ve been following up with it and it has been of great use to me. Make sure to check out his blog: http://simpleprogrammer.com as he also has various posts on how to become a better software developer.