Asteroid has gone over three years without a post, and really can’t have been called “active” since 2011. Originally, this was a place for my opinions and observations, where posting them publicly helped keep me intellectually honest about them in a way, having to defend them in writing, even if no one ever actually read them. The last few years, I suppose the psychological need to imagine that others care about my opinions has shriveled to zero, even gone negative, as I’m more likely to conceal my opinion these days. It’s also true that the falloff seems strongly correlated to the time I became a parent, so maybe that’s the reason.

I have no idea if I’ll ever make more posts to this blog. I suspect I will from time to time. I really need to update my software recommendations lists, for example.

One thing I am sure about is that I’m completely sick of managing and updating WordPress. So, I’ve changed this blog over to Pelican, a Python application that generates a static site (just plain HTML files, with little interactivity, no database, no server-side code, etc.) from a private source directory. Pelican comes with tools that allow conversion from several different types of blog software, including WordPress. The conversion isn’t perfect and needs some hand tweaking, but generally works pretty well. As Pelican sources for posts and pages are all Markdown, it pays if you know its syntax and some of its tricks.

Along the way, I’ve had to give up a few things:

  1. Feedback. A static site means there is no submission of comments, questions, etc., so the “interactive” bits of WordPress are no longer there. Accepting comments means accepting (and managing) spam, so I will not miss them.
  2. Past comments. While there is an option to include comments to past posts in the WordPress exporter/converter, I have elected to eliminate them. Most of my posts never garnered comments anyway, and only a couple ever had comments that were useful or interesting.
  3. Full backwards compatibility. I think that I’ve set the URLs up such that any old links to them on the net should still direct to the correct post. I was not able to do this completely with RSS links, so if my feed was in your RSS reader (you do still use one, right?), you may need to change the URL
  4. Many, many links. This actually had nothing to do with the conversion, just something I noticed while going through the posts. While every link to other sites remain in the posts, a whole lot of them no longer point to anything that still exists. Even many sites that are still around have changed their link format (breaking the contract of a what a URL is supposed to be for). This is particularly true of news sites, where the article I linked to might still exist, but not at the location I’m pointing to. Link rot sucks, but sadly is a factor of time, not blog software.

So begins a new era for my “what I think” blog. I will eventually convert my other blog, the “what I make” blog, to Pelican as well, though that may take longer. (It’s also possible that some more opinion-y posts there may migrate to here.)