Keeping a simple and minimal blog

On October 6, 2012

I started this blog about 9 months ago. It’s been a great experience so far. I have learned so much about blogging since then.

I love to learn new things and blogging has been one of the many such things which I have learned and enjoyed a lot.

It’s just wonderful how much a person can learn about something in just a small amount of time.

When I started out, I knew nothing about blogging. Absolutely nothing. But by reading other popular/valuable blogs daily over this period of time, I think I have understood at least a few important things that are common among all these good blogs.

So, it’s time for me to make some changes to this blog.

The most important reason behind these changes is one that should be on top of every writers/bloggers mind: Giving Something Valuable to the Readers.

This value can be anything that improves the readers life, in any little way. It could be a tip to increase their skills, efficiency, expertise, knowledge or which just makes them think, reflect and understand something in a much better and clear way.

It can also be a solution to some problem.

That’s been one of the reasons for starting this blog. I have always tried to post interesting articles that at least try to make a valuable point. But, it’s difficult to do it every time.

Also, some posts seem very interesting when I write them. But, they don’t seem as interesting, and sometimes even a bit useless, when I see them after few months.

It’s tough being a good writer. But, we can always try :)

It’s easy to clutter a webpage with all ways of monetizing it and just posting some trendy articles. I know that, because even I felt tempted to try such things.

There is nothing wrong in gaining something from your writings. But it’s totally wrong to trick users to visit your website, just to increase the page views and buy your products.

The one thing writers shouldn’t do is to waste the readers time.

Not intending to be one of such writers, here are some simple but important changes that I am introducing to this blog today.

Keeping a simple and minimal look
I like to keep my life simple. I love simple things. I buy things that make my life simpler and hassle-free. That’s why I think it’s a good idea to put this simplicity to this blog too.

It’s very important to have a minimal webpage that gives maximum priority to the contents. This way it’s easy to focus your mind and grasp the message behind the writings, in less time.

Removing Comments
First, I would like to thank every one who took their precious time to comment on this blog. It was great to know your opinions and really felt good when you stopped by just to say a simple “thank you”.

Though the published comments had been very few in number, but it was a tough decision to remove them all together. For every published comment there are also some spammers who just can’t resist themselves from posting junk and ill-treat the writer.

If left unmoderated, they do injustice to the readers who after reading your articles stay back to follow the discussions. I can utilize the time spent in moderating comments in writing better articles.

Also, I think comments add value to the discussion when they are discussed in a more open environment and between highly skilled and experienced people. I have seen this kind of value in Hacker News and some other similar sites.

Using Images only if its necessary
Talking about value, I feel using images just for the sake of using them is a huge letdown. After writing every post I used to spend hours(yes hours!) in finding the perfect image that matches with the post title and content.

What if I had used this time to just review the article few more times. I think my posts would have been better than the way they are now.

That doesn’t mean I won’t use any images hereafter. But, I will make sure that I use them only if it’s necessary.

Quality over quantity
Quality means writing one good article instead of ten mediocre ones.
If something isn’t worth publishing, I won’t publish it. It’s that simple.

There is no point in posting something just to grab eyeballs. An article should refresh the mind, just like a cup of tea(or coffee, whichever you prefer).

Size doesn’t play much role here. I have read several one line quotes that illustrate the point more clearly than several thousand word articles would do. But there are other better platforms that are more suitable for such kind of stuff.

A post should be just long enough to convey the most important points. If it’s just a link or a few sentences, then it’s probably not worth publishing. That’s where Twitter is supposed to do the job.

Using upper case "I" instead of small case "i"
Last, but not the least, is to use upper case “I” in between the sentences. This is the way that every one is used to seeing it. Using “i” makes it look a bit unprofessional.

I still feel that my reasons for using small case “i” were perfectly right. But, it’s clear that everyone doesn’t think so. So, it’s better to use the standard conventions which everyone is used to seeing and which majority of readers would think to be the right way.

One more thing
I was about to hit the publish button. But, just remembered that it’s the first death anniversary of Steve Jobs. The very fact that I am writing this on a Mac and choose to develop iPhone apps as my profession, is thanks to the vision and creative work of this great man. Thanks a lot Steve.

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