Weblogs: Miscellaneous

Title based approach to blogging

Monday, June 16, 2003

Simon Willison has tweaked his blog allowing him to add titles to his entries rather than be constrained to a day-by-day log. The following started off as a comment on his blog, but considering its length it is better off being a blog entry in its own right.

The most valuable product of weblogging is the archives. I found that early on in my young blogging career having more than one blog entry per archive page diluted the usefulness of the page - especially in terms of search engines.

That's why the blog software I wrote myself focuses on delivering a blog entry per page. That also allows me to embellish and dig deeper on the notes I make. Sometimes these notes become almost article length - which in itself is good since it can provide a useful resource.

Although I feel that I am breaking the web-logging journal type mould by allowing myself to go back and edit (refine and add material), it allows me to keep all the material relating to a story or an event together. And from what I can gather - search engines like it better.

Two examples:

I've been following the Southwest Airlines Accessibility case and its implicaitons since the lawsuite was first raised. And for some reason Google's noticed that since a search on Southwest Airlines Accessibility returns my coverage as the first two links (and me bitching about it on the third!). This is the strength of the title based approach over the date based approach.

The second example highlights the weakness of this approach. Ever since the AOL vs Microsoft case was settled very much in Microsoft's favour and the extra tidbit that IE6 SP1 would be the last stand-alone version of IE, it raised the spectre that the Mac version of IE was effectively dead. Two weeks later and it is the major revelation. Unfortunately I have it all grouped as one story - so it may be a better idea to break it into two.

The weakness of the title based approach is that somewhere down the line refactoring is required for some titles.

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