02 August 2021

Revisiting Kottke


The more perspicacious among you will have noticed that the most recent six posts have been sourced from Kottke.org.  I'll explain by starting with a backstory.

I created TYWKIWDBI back in 2007.  That is a long time ago in internet years, but I was not a pioneer.  When I wrote that first post, I was modeling my blog after a group of blogs I had been visiting and reading for probably ten years, such as J-Walk, Nothing to do with Arbroath, Neatorama, Cynical-CPresurfer ... and Kottke.

I compiled a system whereby I would visit some daily, some on specific days of the week, some on weekends - so that I could monitor everything.  It was of course a hopelessly impossible task (as evidenced by the lengthy "blogrolls" at the bottom of the right sidebar here on the front page.

Over the years, news sites (BBC, NYT, StarTribune, Guardian etc) and aggregators (Reddit, Digg) displaced blogs from the "daily" reads.  And time limitations meant that the once-a-week blogs were visited less often.  And thus, Kottke fell through the cracks.

And that's a shame, because Kottke is very much like TYWKIWDBI in terms of content, format, and worldview.  A discussion thread at Ask Metafilter discussed the question of what blogs are like Kottke?  I was pleased to see TYWKIWDBI offered as one of the choices.

Jason Kottke started his blog in 1998 - about ten years before me.  
"Frequent topics of interest among the 26,000+ posts include art, technology, science, visual culture, design, music, cities, food, architecture, sports, endless nonsense, and carefully curated current events, all of it lightly contextualized. Basically, it’s the world’s complete knowledge, relentlessly filtered through my particular worldview, with all the advantages and disadvantages that entails."
There is an interesting interview with Jason Kottke at Rebecca's Pocket:
"Many blogs, including the most visible ones, are vertically focused on things like Web 2.0 (TechCrunch), politics (Instapundit), gadgets (Gizmodo), or celebrity gossip (The Superficial). Kottke.org isn't like that; the only unifying factor is I write about and link to whatever I find interesting. Not that I don't focus mainly on a small groups of topics I'm interested in (technology, photography, food, design, economics, science, etc.) but the day-to-day or week-to-week focus varies widely. Which makes the site an acquired taste; you actually have to read it for a bit to get the gist."
That's the backstory.  Kottke is now back on my daily read list, displacing BoingBoing.

13 comments:

  1. thanks for being here! i also browse digg, boingboing, neatorama, kottke, and flashbak, laughing squid, and a few others. you are my first read.

    I-)

    ReplyDelete
  2. BoingBoing has long since jumped the shark.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I don’t know if BoingBoing even merits a "jumped the shark" given the heaping pile it has become. Between the constant duplicate posts, the constant shilling of 2nd rate drones and earbuds, and the relentless ads it’s become unusable.

      Delete
  3. Replies
    1. Yes, as a fellow Dutchman I followed him as well. Unfortunately he died shortly
      after his last blog post.

      Delete
  4. I started blogging back in 2005 when I was a Christian. When Neatorama was young, Alex suggested that I post occasionally in return for a weekly reciprocating link.

    Then, in the summer of 2009, he hired me. I would write about 7-8 posts per day and occasional long pieces. It was enormous fun. And I got to meet neato people, like Stan.

    I quit in 2016 when I needed to free up time. Then I came back a couple years ago, although I post only intermittently.

    My RSS reader account is mostly for Neatorama content purposes. Kottke is in it, of course, as is TYWKIWDBI. I still read BoingBoing daily because I want to know what people on the Left think.

    ReplyDelete
  5. Great content indeed! As for mitigating your daily reading round, have you considered using an RSS feed reader? I've been using Feedly.com for a good while now and it saves me a lot of surfing. It's very simple: you create a custom list of the blogs, news sites etc. that you want to follow, and the site presents you with the latest posts on each of them (allowing you to click through to the sites themselves if something piques your interest).

    ReplyDelete
  6. Hi I follow a limited number of blogs which have things that interest me. To do this I use Feedly in which I have a free account. It saves me time because I can just scroll through recent posts and open those which interest me. Just thought that you might be interested.

    ReplyDelete
  7. Fellow (ex-)Minnesotan here and long time reader! 2007 is a long time ago, and congrats on keeping it going for this long. That is not easy.

    My blog Spam Resource is going to be 20 years old in less than a month! I'm so excited. But it's super niche (email industry/anti-spam) so it was never going to be super popular or really interesting to people. But I have fun with it.

    My one whine about your blog (and I've probably said this before and who the heck am I anyway and who cares what I think) is that Blogger blogs don't have to look like Blogger any more. They've got a ton of newer, easy to customize templates and I think anybody who can make their Blogger blog NOT look like a Blogger blog, should. Spam Resource is a Blogger blog and I try hard to make it NOT look like one. But I know, I'm me, not everybody cares about that sort of thing.

    ReplyDelete
  8. Wow, that AskMefi is more than a year old, and I never saw it. Someone mentioned my site, described as "daily goofs."

    ReplyDelete
  9. I have been stopping by here at least bi-monthly for the last 11-ish years. TYWKIWDBI has been an endless coffee-table magazine that I am very happy to have access to, and after an afternoon on Kottke I am patiently excited to read through their backlog. As for BoingBoing, I last left them in I think early 2017 as they yet again ramped up their commercialization.
    Thank you from Uppsala, Sweden; Stan, for your fantastic blog as well as this new addition to my modern version of a magazine pile.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I have fond memories of Uppsala from decades ago when I visited briefly on a trip to look for my (Norwegian) roots. A beautiful city.

      Delete
  10. digg, boingboing, and neatorama are very commercialized. at times they are so ad-loaded that their ads stop their site from loading.

    I-)

    ReplyDelete

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...