Alex Soojung-Kim Pang, Ph.D.

I study people, technology, and the worlds they make

Category: Weblogs (page 1 of 24)

Moved from Typepad to WordPress

It’s been almost a year since I last posted to my personal blog; I’ve poured most of the time and energy that I would have devoted to blogging to my next book, and what other time was left has gone to my professional blogs (and a little to Twitter and Facebook, of course). I’ve also been slowly moving over to WordPress, hosting the Deliberate Rest blog on a WordPress service, and finally decided that the time had come to either close down these older properties, or relocate them.

Life's better when we're connected

Now that the book is done, and Memorial Day weekend gave me a bit of time, I decided to take the plunge.

I first consolidated several blogs— my personal blog, and two subject-specific projects on futures and the end of cyberspace— into one, exported that, and then sent it to Typepad 2 WordPress for conversion.

I also moved the domain name from GoDaddy to Name.com, as it seemed easier to deal with everything in one place (and because I was having serious trouble making things work otherwise, to tell the truth). That took a few hours, which I suppose is okay given how disruptive it would be to lose a domain accidentally, or to have it stolen— and given that it was estimated to take several days.

Diversion

The whole process was a lot less painful than I expected. There’s always some cleanup you need to do, and I helped myself years ago by using Flickr for my blog photos (so I didn’t have to import lots of pictures), but generally it was pretty smooth.

The main reason I moved from Typepad is that I want to try to consolidate my various online identities, gather together my scattered activities, and make it easier to reassemble and repurpose material.

Right now I’ve got accounts on Typepad, WordPress, and Strikingly (for the Distraction Addiction book advertisement page); I’d like to get that down to two, or even one, if possible.

I also would love to have a workflow where everything goes through one or two sites— this one and the deliberate rest blog (or the blog of whatever live project I have going on)— and then Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, etc. get pinged about new material, rather than do things separately across these different platforms. Buffer helps consolidate some of this, but I still feel like Twitter and LinkedIn and Facebook aren’t really useful platforms for gathering and remembering thing, which is something I need.

Finally something worth reading

I would also to have things working so I can more easily take posts, put them together, revise them, and republish them in ebook format. For me a blog is useful as a first— or maybe half— draft of other things, and so I’d like the workflow to better support that.

Unfortunately, in this category, while WordPress has tons of plugins for reposting to Buffer, copying to Evernote, etc., it’s not clear that Typepad is keeping up— or is able to keep up.

So we’ll see how this goes!

Look on Contemplative Computing

Diversion

Just a note: most of my blogging these days happens on my Contemplative Computing blog, though I also maintain an active (but not too active) Twitter account.

Trying out Blogsy

I decided to download Blogsy, a blog editor for the iPad, and give it a try. I’ve lamented the apparent absence of decent Typepad editors (indeed, I still pine for the old days of Ecto), but this one looks pretty promising.


via flickr

I spent yesterday at the Being Human conference in San Francisco, about which I’ll have more to say shortly. It was a very interesting time, and quite well-done.

Is the Mac blog editor market down to Mars Edit?

Hard to believe, but it looks that way. I poked around a little with Ecto this afternoon, and it looks like it’s now abandonware. I like Mars Edit well enough– the Flickr integration is nice, in particular– but there are some strange elements to it– no dedicated button for links, for example, which I shake my head at every time I write something.

But it seems impossible to me that Mars Edit is pretty much the whole game now. Can that be right?

And where the heck is the good blog editor for the iPad?

This is why Woody Allen said “I am at two with nature:” Nature Wants to Eat You

The next time you need a break, check out Ed Yong's great new blog, Nature Wants to Eat You. Terrifying carnivores were never so entertaining. (I also never knew that Nietzsche said, "When you stare into the abyss, the abyss reaches up and bites your face off." I must have been reading an out of date translation.)

On Contemplative Computing

Recent posts:

Its total lack of movement was due to it bein’ tired and shagged out following a prolonged squawk

I notice that the last post here was about ten days ago, and I wanted to assure myself (and the two or three other readers) that I’ve been absorbed in working on my book, and so most of my posting is on the contemplative computing blog. Posts that have appeared there since Paris include:

I suspect this pattern will continue, and at times I’ll regret not having one blog for everything, but it’s too late to stop now.

(The title of this post, of course, is from the classic Monty Python dead parrot sketch.)

Bye bye link posts

At a friend’s suggestion, I’ve eliminated the Delicious links blogs posts, and replaced them with a list of recent bookmarks in the sidebar. Back to just prose here.

How to write about Other Places

When I’m not working on my current project (I suspect that “WTF Do Clients Really Do With Scenarios?” won’t make the cut at a peer-reviewed journal, so I need to start thinking of a different name, or a version with less cursing), I’m starting to deal with logistics for the trip to Cambridge. Indeed, I’m beginning to suspect that I’ll need as many months to complete the paperwork as I’ll actually spend doing research. But it’ll be worth it.

I’m also starting to wonder how I should write about the trip. Of course there’s no question that I’ll at least keep the blog going, and maybe try to wring some piece of travel writing out of the trip (something about journeying through high-tech England? scientific England? frankly, it’ll be whatever the assignment editor wants), but I don’t want to sound like a typical American mystified by, but ultimately won over by the cultivated charms and sophistication of Europe; I suppose James Watson’s Double Helix is as good a model as any for writing about doing research in Cambridge… but there are probably other literary stereotypes I want to be aware of and avoid. I was made sensitive about this by a fabulous series of four short essays (inspired by Binyavanga Wainaina’s “How to Write About Africa“) about How to Write About Pakistan, of which this one (by Daniyal Mueenuddin) is my favorite:

Lying in my bed at 7.48 a.m., laptop on lap. Too much writing in this position over the years has given me neck-aches. I’d do yoga if it weren’t such a non-Pakistani sounding activity. For a Pakistani writer to do yoga feels like questioning the two-nation theory. So I complain, which brings enormous relief and a sense of oneness with my subject matter.

When it comes to Pakistani writing, I would encourage us all to remember the brand. We are custodians of brand Pakistan. And beneficiaries. The brand slaps an extra zero onto our advances, if not more. Branding can be the difference between a novel about brown people and a best-selling novel about brown people. It is our duty to maintain and build that brand….

It took a lot of writing to get us here, miles of fiction and non-fiction in blood-drenched black and white. Please don’t undo it. Or at least please don’t undo it until I’ve cashed in a couple more times. Apartments abroad are expensive.

[To the tune of Blue Man Group, “White Rabbit (Feat Esthero),” from the album The Complex (a 2-star song, imo).]

Blogging elsewhere

I realized I’ve not been writing much here, but have been doing more stuff on my professionally-related blogs. So, here’s a list of recent posts on Future2:

And on End of Cyberspace:

Just don’t want to seem like a slacker…

[To the tune of Michael Nyman Band, “An Eye For Optical Theory (from The Draughtsman’s Contract),” from the album The Essential Michael Nyman Band (a 1-star song, imo).]

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