I began blogging seven years ago today (in 2003), after finishing our family Christmas letter (the Harking Herald–Jahrblatt, now in vol. 20), and having a few free moments to see how easy it might be to start my own blog on Blogger.
About four years ago (in mid 2006), after researching free online tools while on a short sabbatical in Japan, where my wife was teaching at the time, I began editing Wikitravel articles about cities I had visited there. I also created my first new article on Wikipedia and started a Flickr site for all the photos of springtime in Japan that I took with my small digital camera. I’ve now added more than 3400 photos from other travels, some of them scans from older prints, which have altogether attracted about 430,000 views.
Shortly after returning to work in July 2006, I migrated a work blog from WordPress.org software running on our own server, to a better-looking, sturdier, and more spam-proof blog at WordPress.com. I easily imported all my old posts from my old Far Outliers on Blogger.com into a new Far Outliers on WordPress.com and began posting to both blogs, partly as backup, partly to avoid orphaning my old blog and its regular readers and indexers. I have created several more WordPress blogs for other people since then. Each Far Outliers blog now contains over 2100 blogposts of identical content but different appearance (with almost 660,000 page views on my older Blogger site, plus over 200,000 on my WordPress site).
About two years ago (early in 2009), I discovered that my documentary photography hobby could serve to supply photos for the intersection of two WikiProjects: WP National Register of Historic Places and WP Hawai‘i. That hobby snowballed drastically this year after a local reporter who likes to write about old buildings profiled us in the local paper. By now I have edited, expanded, or created hundreds of Wikipedia articles.
About two months ago, after our daughter’s wedding, I finally relented and joined Facebook, to which I’m now adding more old photographs of friends and family, photos with faces in them.
So there you have it, a growing list of excuses for not blogging as much as I used to. The next seven years of blogging may remain fairly lean, but only because I’ve got too many other projects going.