How Blogs Broke the Web

Ain’t it great when you start to suspect a thing is true and mutter about it to other people and then someone comes along and expresses it in more detail and better than you ever could? Yeah, that just happened. How Blogs Broke the Web.

I would add: Static Site Generators don’t really change anything from wordpress-style blogs. They’re an implementation detail. The difference between a static site generator versus a wordpress blog is no different than a MySQL-backed blog vs a Sqlite or Postgres-backed blog. In either case, the content is an abstraction and a machine generates the final product on an as-needed basis, and you are isolated from the results and possibly do not understand the process by which they are generated and you do not feel in control of it. And you are at the mercy of the makers of the software.

So just go with WordPress if you like, you’re not a second class citizen. You’re getting the non-cached results of operations on a relational database instead of the cached results of operations on a bag of files.

I mean, unless you really like having that bag of files and operating on it instead of operating through textboxes on a relational database. In that case, go for it!

Of course, the elephant in my personal room is “how does Tiddlywiki fit into all of this?” And the answer to that elephant is as always “it’s complicated.” A tiddlywiki is not plain hand-edited HTML. And yet, it is a single file, which you edit and save, and you put it on the web, and there is no separation or virtualization between “the thing you edit” and “the thing you publish.” There is no content management system or integration pipeline to lose; there is no database backing it; it is itself. In this sense it is very like the early, pre-blog web. Oh yes, and its default format is a garden rather than a diary, though like the early web you can use it for both.

Anyways, good article.

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