Tag Archives: blog

Etchings on the Digital Cave Walls: The Evolving Nature of Blogs

Posted on 12. Jan, 2014 by .

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Well hello there. It’s been over 4 months since the last update, and I only posted 9 times in 2013.

these hands Etchings on the Digital Cave Walls: The Evolving Nature of BlogsIf anyone who happens to read this follows my other creative outlets, you can see that I’ve been anything but dormant – posting regularly to 500px, Flickr, Instagram, Facebook and Twitter. Despite the silence, I actually traveled quite a lot in 2013: China, around a large swath of the U.S. for 7 weeks, Indonesia, Singapore and destinations throughout the Philippines, most recently the island of Siquijor.

So why the lack of blog posts? Honestly it comes down to sake of ease. When you’re busy, it’s far easier to post a Twitter update or Facebook post than to log into WordPress, deal with formatting or embedding images, etc. I certainly am not the only feeling the effects of this paradigm shift. Check out Kottke’s recent post, “R.I.P. The Blog, 1997-2013″ where he said:

Sometime in the past few years, the blog died. In 2014, people will finally notice. Sure, blogs still exist, many of them are excellent, and they will go on existing and being excellent for many years to come. But the function of the blog, the nebulous informational task we all agreed the blog was fulfilling for the past decade, is increasingly being handled by a growing number of disparate media forms that are blog-like but also decidedly not blogs.

Instead of blogging, people are posting to Tumblr, tweeting, pinning things to their board, posting to Reddit, Snapchatting, updating Facebook statuses, Instagramming, and publishing on Medium. In 1997, wired teens created online diaries, and in 2004 the blog was king. Today, teens are about as likely to start a blog (over Instagramming or Snapchatting) as they are to buy a music CD. Blogs are for 40-somethings with kids.

As he clearly states, this was a deliberately provocative statement, and yet rings true on many levels. When I started blogging in 2002, there was essentially no other medium available for posting regular content to the web.

This site began as a method for reaching family and friends who wished to keep up with my (often ridiculous) stories of travel and adventure as a bright-eyed naïve 24 year old new to expatriate life in Indonesia. I suppose it then evolved into a small, interesting community of regular commenters – many of whom I had never met (but many I’ve since met) and yet enjoyed hearing from.

From there it morphed into a place to post my love of photography, but with much less of an introspective spin (probably for the best). And finally, since moving to the Philippines, I’ve had less and less time to maintain my interests outside of work. In just 4  1/2 intensely busy years in Manila, I completed an international teacher’s certification, finished a master’s degree in 2 years, have been teaching master’s courses online and most recently started a new company (all outside of working full time).

So where does this leave this blog? Will I abandon it completely? Would that be preferable to these random, infrequent posts spaced months apart allowing the blog to slowly fade into insignificance and decay?

No.

There may no one left to even read these words beyond the robots that troll for cataloguing every word I type into a permanent archive to shape my future self’s online shopping preferences. And yet, I’m driven to forge on, documenting whatever comes to mind, posting photos from my various travels, (I’m up to about 85,000 untouched photos at the moment).

If nothing else, once I’m at the end of my time on this earth, it’ll be interesting to look back upon these various stages of life with fondness and an appreciation for the years that rolled past, glancing over thoughts authored throughout decades, etched on the digital cave walls reflecting this tiny blip on the radar of existence.

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Bali for 5 weeks

Posted on 14. Jul, 2012 by .

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I haven’t fallen off the face of the earth – I’ve just been much less disconnected in Bali for the past 5 weeks. I’ll update more appropriately soon. This poor blog turns 10 years old in a couple of months – need to breathe some life back into it!

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Social media vs blogging (Google+, 500px, Twitter, Facebook, etc)

Posted on 19. Dec, 2011 by .

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I’ve been slacking on the blogging front, mostly due to my workload and recent travels to Indonesia and Puerto Galera, but also due to the fact that I’ve been posting in various other places (Google+, Twitter, Facebook, 500px, etc). I realize many bloggers have jumped ship for an easier, micro-blogging style of presenting a lifestream, but I have no desire to abandon this blog no matter how busy I get.

Here are some of the other ways to keep track of my photography and travels (the links are directed to my various profiles):

Google+

Screen Shot 2011 12 19 at 9.03.39 PM 540x165 Social media vs blogging (Google+, 500px, Twitter, Facebook, etc)

I find Google+ to be a great place to discover new photographers. I’ve been seeking a viable alternative to Flickr for quite sometime. I think Google needs to figure out where this is going, but it seems to have far more more traction than Buzz. It’s also grown much more quickly than I had expected. In only two months of being active, I’ve developed over 5,600 followers. I’ve been using Twitter for nearly 5 years and have only about 1,400 followers. Not that the number of followers necessary reflects any significance.

500px

Screen Shot 2011 12 19 at 9.03.56 PM 540x549 Social media vs blogging (Google+, 500px, Twitter, Facebook, etc)

500px is an interesting development. I receive far far less “views” on photos there and have almost no social contact or feedback – and that’s ok – cause the minimalistic design and clean portfolio options trump the cluttered feeling one gets when viewing Flickr. I’ll be uploading less work here but more of my culled photos.

Twitter

Even after nearly 5 years, Twitter still has a purpose. I’ve gone through many phases with its use, but it’s still unbeatable in terms of reaching certain groups, colleagues, resources and perspectives.

 

What are your preferred social media tools? Do you still see a place for blogs?

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Moving to a house

Posted on 30. May, 2011 by .

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Apologies for not keeping up the blog lately, but we’re in the process of moving from a condo to a house this week. We’ll miss the gorgeous pools, green space, spa, gyms, etc that the condo life provided, but it’s time to try out more space. The house is great – all renovated with all brand new appliances throughout, a big water fountain in the back yard with nice spotlights, but unfortunately no pool. icon sad Moving to a house Pics to come.

In about a week and a half, we’ll be heading to the States for the summer. Can’t. Wait. This has been an absolutely hectic year; amongst the more stressful years I’ve experienced. It’ll be good to get back to relaxing for 6 weeks.

 

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Sunset in Manila – taken with iPhone 4 and Camera+

Posted on 01. May, 2011 by .

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There are tons of everyday shots that I take with both the iPhone 4 and Canon S95 that never make it to the blog. Generally if I post any of them, they go onto Facebook or Twitter.

I’m thinking about posting more of the everyday stuff on this blog. Here’s an example, this sunset taken last night on High Street, Fort Bonifacio with the iPhone and the Camera+ app. If you don’t have that app, I highly recommend it over the ‘stock’ iPhone camera app.

If this looks a little funky, it’s because I used the ‘clarity’ feature in Camera+

210530 10150234525555708 740580707 9086192 1049700 o 540x402 Sunset in Manila   taken with iPhone 4 and Camera+

204682 10150234524900708 740580707 9086184 2974983 o 540x723 Sunset in Manila   taken with iPhone 4 and Camera+

 

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Post about Indonesian women and expat men has reached 221 comments

Posted on 05. Apr, 2011 by .

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This post from nearly 5 years ago has certainly received a lot of feedback – currently at 221 comments. And there were many more comments not approved or moderated for various reasons (and I’m very lenient). It appears the nature of relationships between Asian women and foreigners is a hot topic. Unfortunately, the discussion also seems to breed hate, blatant racism, extreme generalizations, and the other crap that comes with the telling of peoples’ personal history.

Each of these delicately composed comments comes streaming (and sometimes shouting) into my inbox, at times more frequently than bathroom breaks. I’m so often tempted to respond, to speak my own mind, and share my experiences having been with an amazing, loving, and caring Indonesian woman for so many years – experiences so very opposite from the majority of those sharp words expressed in the comments. But then again, whose mind am I going to change? If someone has had a horrible experience with love or has witnessed a partner using them only as a means to an end, who am I to say that they’re wrong to lash out?

Despite the fact that this blog is centered around photography, travel, culture, and my own life experiences as an expatriate living in Asia, I’ll continue to allow the comments to flow. I simply ask that before you contribute to the discussion, you ask yourself if you’d say the same thing if you were face-to-face with others, that you consider the flip side to your beliefs and statements, and that you strive to maintain some semblance of respect – especially in terms of religion. Don’t confuse the disparity of wealth and blatant naivety with a particular religion.

Having said that, perhaps it’s time for me to share my own perspectives on this matter from many years of personal experience.

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Photoblog – still undecided, but here’s what I have thus far

Posted on 21. Mar, 2010 by .

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I’m still in the midst of investigating photoblog options. As I previously mentioned, I’ve been playing with Pixelpost. The preliminary results of that effort can be viewed here: http://thejavajive.com/photoblog

Just for kicks I installed Flogr – which creates a photoblog from your flickr account – removing the need to upload images multiple times (via the blog, pixelpost, etc). It’s an interesting concept but won’t be my ultimate solution. Here’s what it looks like: http://thejavajive.com/flickr

And lastly, thanks to a suggestion, I’ve started giving ThemeForest a look. It seems like a fantastic way to seek out fresh designs from a plethora of talented designers rather than purchase from just one company. This may be a solution if I decide to build it based off of WordPress again.

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Twenty-ten thus far

Posted on 08. Feb, 2010 by .

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2010 has shaped up to be quite the rollercoaster ride thus far. Five weeks in and yet so many dramatic, euphoric highs and nausea-inducing lows. I dig a life of change and spontaneity, but it’s sure not easy on the soul.1342429 dc0ce64840 m Twenty ten thus far

Fortunately, I’ll now have more time to blog and get back into photography once again. I’m only now starting to settle after nearly 7 months in Manila. The pace of these past few months has been exhausting, but things are finally leveling out.

For this blog I envision moving more towards quicker, more frequent postings. I also am going to be bringing back the external links to sites I enjoy. I removed them with the redesign, but was never satisfied with cluttering up the site. Also, I may look into optimizing this blog for mobile access. How many of you have difficulty viewing it on various handphones?

How has 2010 been unfolding for you?

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