Tweet Less, Blog More and Keep Your Content

Update your blog

Scott Hanselman had a great piece of the weekend about controlling your content destiny by blogging more and “tweeting” less.   I use “tweeting” as the generic term for putting content on social networks like Twitter, Facebook and Google+.

In the past year or so I admit to blogging less and “tweeting” more.  I spend a fair amount of time on Twitter and an increasing amount on Google+, but the truth is, Scott is right and those places don’t care about me at all. 

You are not blogging enough. You are pouring your words into increasingly closed and often walled gardens. You are giving control – and sometimes ownership – of your content to social media companies that will SURELY fail. These companies are profoundly overvalueddon’t care about permalinksdon’t make your content portable, and have terms of service that are so complex and obtuse that there are entire websites dedicate to explaining them.

I think the reason blogging is in decline is because sharing a thought is so much easier on Twitter.  In 140 characters you can get a thought out and be done.  Blogging is a craft which takes some to evolve the thought into something someone else might want to read. 

Twitter cares only about Twitter which is shown by their recent announcement of upcoming API changes which mainly stick it to developers.  Pay-for social networks like App.net are popping up which claim to allow users to keep their content.  I’m sorry, but no way I am forking out $50 for a Twitter clone.  

Also remember, blog for yourself, not for the audience.  Say what you want to say because it’s your soapbox to do so.  Blog on.

 

Dark Matter Developers: The Unseen 99%

A really interesting and true post today by Scott Hanselman as he explains what Dark Matter Developers are and how a large percentage of developers can be classified this way:

My coworker Damian Edwards and I hypothesize that there is another kind of developer than the ones we meet all the time. We call them Dark Matter Developers. They don’t read a lot of blogs, they never write blogs, they don’t go to user groups, they don’t tweet or facebook, and you you don’t often see them at large conferences. Where are these dark matter developers online?

Scott points out where he thinks these developers are:

Where are the dark matter developers? Probably getting work done. Maybe using ASP.NET 1.1 at a local municipality or small office. Maybe working at a bottling plant in Mexico in VB6. Perhaps they are writing PHP calendar applications at a large chip manufacturer.*

Personally, I know quite a few of these developers and I prod them to not be so introverted, get out to meet ups, blog or at least join and use Twitter.  Maybe these folks have it right, maybe we should just get things done and spend the rest of the time focused on things that are more important to us.  I think they could be right, we spend our time on things we are passionate about, we work because we have to…we need to provide for our families.

To me, the difference between the Dark Matter Developers and those like Scott, is the passion.  Not everyone is passionate about the work they do, the work on and move on to things they like better.  I have been passionate about computers for as long as I can remember, devouring technology in every waking hour because it fascinates me.  I believe this is what separates these two distinct types of developers.

I am a Dark Matter Home Owner.  I hate doing maintenance around the house; lawn mowing, raking, building and painting.  I have better things to do with my time and fixing a leaky gutter is not it.  I would rather read a book on algorithms and pay someone to mow my lawn..that’s just I roll.