I have not posted in quite a while here, seems that my latest post was just after New Year.
There is a reason for that of course – after being single for a while I have now met a wonderful girl which I have been seeing since early January. This has changed daily life in a few ways and gaming and a few other things has simply been something that there has not been time for – even less for blogging about gaming obviously.
Love is in the air and I am loving it.
I have not been writing muc at all in the past few months – this is primarily because I have mostly been doing Other Stuff – not playing a lot of MMOs. Firefall has received most of my attention, but even that game has been limited to perhaps a few hours per week at most.
So while I do not have a complete break from MMOs, my attention in this area is somewhat low at the moment. Thus I have not found much interesting to publish from my side in the MMO space.
I am quite eager to blog and post though – just not so much about MMOs currently. So I have been contemplating to start new blogs for new topics, or write more about other topics in this blog. In the end it will probably be a mix of both – a few more leisure and free time-oriented topics here in this blog. There may be another blog also more around software development and operations topics also – suff that I also happen to do at work.
A post should have some pictures also, so I have added a few pictures from a recent hiking trip to Gran Canaria, near the village of Tejeda – a topic that may get some more coverage later.
This was also a test to use Windows Live Writer to write the blog post. Not convinced yet that I will use i regularly, but that remains to be seen.
I have not been blogging in the past 3+ weeks, which is simply because there has been other matters – more work to handle before travelling abroad and then travelling abroad. Just returned home from a 2 week trip to California and Silicon Valley. The first week was a road trip with a few colleagues, first along highway 1 (most of the time) down to San Diego from San Francisco and then up to Yosemite and later back to San Francisco. For this part of the trip, Yosemite was the most amazing part – would have loved to spend more time there. The forest fire in Yosemite is worrying though and we did see the smoke from it in the distance.
The second week was a conference/learning journey with my employer and pretty much the whole company, with some quite interesting visits and events. It was quite an amazing and intense week; also the first time we traveled this far and were away for this long. Now I am back home, at bit jet-lagged and full of impressions and thoughts.
So a bit later this week I will probably be back with the blogging, after catching up a bit.
The Newbie Blogger Initiative is in full swing this month, so I thought I would provide a few suggestions and advice on writing blog posts. As I cannot claim to be a particularly successful blogger (no fame and glory), this is also a mix of things that I do as well as things that I do not do – at least not regularly.
- Schedule your blog writing, not your blog posting
Unless you write for a living, chances are that you may not be able to write blog posts at a regular, frequent interval and provide good content. Better then to schedule times for when you sit down and write blog posts. If you do not allocate time in advance, chances are you might not write anything – “no time right now”.
Once you are happy with a blog post, then you can publish it.
It may take 1 session, 2 sessions, 5 sessions – eventually you will have written something you are happy with.
- Avoid walls of text
Make it easy for your reader to read your text – people will generally read it through a browser on a computer, or perhaps a tablet or a mobile phone. Reasonably small paragraphs with some space in between will help.
New readers might also just decide to ignore your post, too much effort to figure out if it is worthwhile to read for them.
- In the first paragraph, write a summary and introduction to what your blog post is about
This is a technique that is used in newspaper articles, to capture interested readers and/or get part of the message across for those that are simply browsing.
A lot of people will be reading blogs through an RSS/ATOM reader or stumble upon blog posts through search engines. Without something to draw their interest, they might just consider skipping it if they are not a regular reader.
- Use a spell checker
Bad spelling and grammar can diminish the general experience of your post. This is in particular something to have in mind if you do not write in your native language. Not that native speakers are immune to bad spelling and grammar, but we who post blogs in other languages than our own may still be at a slight disadvantage here.
Regardless of what language you write in, chances are that you may be blind to the mistakes you make because your mind sees what you intended and not what you have written.
- When you have written your blog post, go back and update the first introduction/summary paragraph
If you have used the previous suggestion with a summary in the beginning, go back and rewrite it when you are done with your blog post. Chances are that what you ended up writing is not entirely what you initially thought you would write. Plus you might have thought of a much better way to describe it at this point.
- When you have finished writing the blog post, do not click Publish immediately
If you are like me you have ended up spending more time writing the post than you have planned for, it is late in the evening/night or you have to rush to do something else. Not a good time to publish it, especially if you are forcing or squeezing out the last parts. Chances are that you have forgotten something you wanted to include, some phrases will look weird, you have made spelling mistakes etc. In most cases it does not have to be published right now.
Relax a little bit, perhaps do something else and then read the post again.
If you are still happy with it, then publish it.
Personally I have been consistently bad at scheduling my blog writing time – the few times I have done that it has worked out well, I think. I am a bit too quick to publish something I have written also, especially after a (too) long writing session. For me, most of the hits I get on the blog come from search engines, but I have no idea how often or how many of these may continue to read what I write beyond what initially got them here.
This is not game stuff, but if you are a techie you might find this fun. Otherwise just skip it until next post 😉
Apparently the company Groupon, which use Ruby on Rails, were looking for more talents to work with that. A recruiter from the company, most likely without knowing much about Ruby on Rails, contacted Mr Hansson for an opportunity.
I found that quite hilarious.
Through a post in Anarchy Online forums I found this wonderful site: Bad Translator. The site allows you to enter a limited amount of English text and then runs that text back and forth between English and some other languages a couple of times – you can select the number of iterations to run.
I ran a couple of sentences through the translator to see what happened:
- I got a level 58 Bureaucrat in Anarchy Online -> (30 iterations) -> I have 58 pages of fantasy
- Get your facts first, and then you can distort them as much as you please -> (30 iterations) -> They distort what you want
- Is that game just another WoW clone? -> (30 iterations) -> F This is how simple awareness of the game?
- I’ll be back. -> (30 iterations) -> Show
- Our village has been plagued by nasty rodents for a while now. Would you help us kill ten rats, glorious adventurer? -> (30 iterations) -> In mice, long-term illness. We’ll help guide you need?
- I am not young enough to know everything. -> (30 iterations) -> I know your children.