Malacandra.me

Welcome to my Blog

It seems like something of a throwback in this age of Twitter and Facebook, which empowers time-crunched persons like myself the ability to send little blipvert gems into the noösphere and be done with it, rather than committing to the long form of writing something with, oh, paragraphs in it.

This isn't to say that I'm not down with the social media thing.  It's just that I sometimes have something to say that is a little more nuanced than I can fit into an SMS packet, and a whole lot of Facebook and Twitter posts consists of links… so I figured I should build something to link to.

Because, after all, just what the world was crying out for was another damn blog, right?

You didn't have enough aggregation in your life already?

Here's the thing…  I'm neither likely to be prolific enough (nor am I sufficiently conceited to think that I'm fascinating enough) to have people beating a path to a blog if all it consisted of was my own musings and dazzling insights.

However, one thing I do on an ongoing basis is to source information from the torrential river that is the web - and pan through those murky waters to find nuggets that I prize - and which I notice that others also seem to value.

So, this is what I'm going to do - I'm going to take a bunch of my favorite streams of information, and cull the most fun, fascinating and shiniest bits - and post them here.  I'm doing that anyways for myself, and rather than clog up my friends' Facebook walls and Twitter feeds, I'm archiving what I find here.

I custom-built the site to facilitate that process, and I'll probably keep tweaking it to optimize it as I go along.

So… what you're doing is stealing other people's content?

Most of the material I'm posting here is syndicated from other sites using RSS feeds that they offer for just that purpose… and I'm providing attribution and links to the original sources: there's nothing surrepetitious about it.

Hell, the Huffington Post does a ton of aggregation of content to their site… the only difference is that I don't give a damn about the personal lives of media celebs, so that's not the kind of stuff I'll be hosting here.

Which begs the question… what will be hosted here?

Well, there will be personal missives… and I'm passionate and opinionated about my interests: technology, science, web development, media and politics.  Lately, what's been up for me has been a DIY project to put solar panels on my roof.  This is going to be fully documented by my housemate George in a series of posts and videos at Solaricious (which will also be syndicated here), but I'll post my own take on this as well. 

As for the politics: I'm an unapologetic liberal (or progressive - however you want to put it).  If you don't like that, there are plenty of other blogs for you. Enjoy them in good health. 

I do both programming and graphic design, so those interest me, and news of web technology will be featured, as well as innovations in hardware and software. But a large amount of the information found on sites like Engadget and Gizmodo consists of news and speculation about every new gadget that comes down the pike, and it's easy to drown in that - so I'm going to largely focus on what's innovative or truly novel, rather than flooding the page with articles about every new generation of laptop, tablet or cell phone.

And of course, what would the internet be without the LOLz?

Who are you, anyways?

I'm a web developer living in Northern California, and I've had my own little consulting buisiness for more than a dozen years, and before that I had an even longer career as a software engineer. Remember AOL?  I developed the prototype for that at a little company called PlayNet (check this jaw-dropping video out). 

I spent a number of years developing graphics and multimedia authoring software at Time Arts and Macromedia, as well as data visualization tools.

Currently I mostly develop sites for political campaigns and advocacy organizations.

And what's the deal with 'Malacandra'?

I've been using the name "Malacandra" online for close to a decade.  It's based on the name of the planet Mars in C.S. Lewis' space trilogy - which I loved as a teen.  I reread it a few years ago and realized it was a stinging indictment of secular humanism, which is something I've grown rather fond of.  Oh, well.

Also, it sounds a bit like my real name as said by somone very inebriated.