Changing Lanes

I’ve been writing a blog on the internet for yearsso many years that if I ever switch platforms (yes, Blogger, Tumblr, and WordPress, I’m looking at you), I invariably end up talking to the support staff for days because my canon of verbiage causes their infrastructure to fall over spectacularly. Who knew that some nobody would turn up with 9 years worth of writingI’ve written everywhereonline. In the early daysbefore platforms such as WordPress, Blogger, TypePad, Tumblr, and Posterous existedI built my own blogging solution, and released it as open source. It ended up being bundled with Novell web server software as an example application (it would have been nice for them to tell me in advance, but heyit made me famous for five minutes).

Over the last few years the main part of my writingthe “journal”, if you want to call it thathas lived at WordPress. It records the days of our lives; the thoughts, memories and observations about us as a family, me as a person, and the various struggles of bringing up the children. The hope is that one day when the children are older, they will be able to look back and find out who we were, and that we had the same worries, stresses, and expriences they will have. When we are long gone, future generations will be able to know us as we no don’tknow our ancestors.

The advent of social networks over the last few years created a divide in the content we share between short form, and long form content. Suddenly we found ourselves choosing the best destination for immediate news"Katie’s tooth fell out", and the story of a few days"Christmas in Cornwall". We naturally began to choose the destination based on the audience.

Facebook became a place for family and real world friends. Twitter became a noisy party, filled with throngs of people we kind of know, but will probably never meet. Blogs became an online diary where news is recorded, but not shouted about.

This left a middle groundthe requirement for a space to share interesting things we see, hear or experience with the world around us, that we might like to share with the wider world. Two platforms seem to have evolved into this space; Tumblr and Posterous, and neither seemed to have a great solution. Until now.

About a month ago, Posterous turned their entire platform on it’s headcausing a backlash the likes even Facebook has never seen before. In reality they had built something quite brilliant, but released it to the world in an un-finished state (or rather, they should have tested it farmore than they did). I commented at the time that we might even see the end of the servicethey had almost pulled the rug out from beneath their own feet, turning a fantastically simple blogging solution into a nightmare.

It turns out patience brings rewardsor at least it has done with Posterous.

I now have that middle ground solutionsomewhere to throw photos, observations, thoughts, and ideas that don’t warrant a journal entry, are bigger than Twitter, and I don’t want to entrust to Facebook. Yes, you could see Posterous as “just another social network”, but really it isn’t. It’s as powerful or flexible as you want it to be, and perhaps crucially, as simple as you want it to be.

All it takes is an email to post@posterous.com and you have a blog. Yesit really is that simple.