A Tumblelog That Goes Ping?

The Tumblelog That Goes Ping
A while ago I expressed frustration with my current blogging habits, which seemed to consist almost solely of quick links and quotes and stuff. In the comments, James suggested I embrace it, and maybe take a look at Tumblr, a service for doing what the kids are calling tumblelogging (i.e. what I’ve been doing anyway).

I’ve resisted blogging services so far in favor of just running my own blog from a Dreamhost account. But Tumblr does have a really nice, simple interface specialized to do the kind of blogging that I’ve been doing by default for months.

Of course, a real tumblelogger writes his own software for it, preferably in Ruby.

So I’ve got some things to think about:

Do I abandon the traditional blog format and WordPress software and follow the tumblelog path?

If I do that, do I take advantage of the slick and easy to use tumblr.com service, or host it myself?

If I host it myself, do I use some existing tumblelog software and enjoy the fruits of someone else’s labor, or do I challenge myself and write my own?

Much to dither about.

UPDATE: OK, so I tried it for a day and I miss having a real blog, and the possibility of comments. It doesn’t feel right rambling into a tumblr account, and being able to ramble about random stuff is part of the deal. And comments are nice too.

I still feel like I want to change something. I don’t think I want to flip over to just blogging on tumblr though. Hm.

11 thoughts on “A Tumblelog That Goes Ping?”

  1. Personally, I’d probably go with putting someone else’s tumbleblog software on the hosting you’ve already got.

    My reasons:
    1. A personal preference for centralization: Why have your stuff spread out in a million different places?
    2. On writing your own: If the main purpose of this is to get blogging soon (as opposed to improving one’s programming), I’d go with someone else’s software. Similarly, I wouldn’t write my own word processor before writing a novel. Blogging software is simpler, but I’d say the overall point still stands.

    Actually, is there a wordpress plugin that makes it work better for tumbleblogging? If there is, you might not have to change much of anything.

  2. Actually, with regards to the answer to the last question I asked… It’s not so much a plugin that you need as much as a wordpress theme for tumblelogging.

    Are there any? Yes. It happens that there are several. Thus, you could change the theme, keep all your archives and do something new.

  3. I’ve seen some “WordPress2Tumbleblog” stuff floating around. Prepare to weep. Seems overdone.

    The magic of tumbling is that it’s a limited number of “categories” that are really just exaggerated styles, isn’t it? I’ve had a tumblr account for a while but never used it, but I just looked back in on it before running my mouth.

    The trickiest thing it does in terms of style is the chat/dialog, which gets pretty, table-like styling. The rest seems like generic CSS with an eye toward simplicity.

    Anyhow, whatever you do please just publicize where I can find the RSS. It all ends up in an aggregator anyhow. :-)

  4. Having to leave WordPress behind and get a fresh start would be a feature, not a bug…

  5. Thinking about it… I’m realizing that it’d be stupid to reinvent a wheel just because I think it’s the sort of thing I ought to be able to do.

    So that rules out the “write my own to be manly” option.

  6. I went to the Tumbleblog and thought “who took a dump on Ed’s blog?” I’m glad the real blog is back :)

  7. Joe: I think you just sealed the fate of the tumblelog forever with that comment. :)

  8. Your promotion of tumblr persuaded me to take a look at it. I like the layouts for short content (sorry, Joe). But it did occur to me that any blogging engine that lets you modify the HTML/CSS of your own content would let you emulate whatever you like about tumblr, although I haven’t bothered to try myself yet (busy learning GWT).

    So I’d add a third possibility: shameless steal whatever you like about tumblr while keeping what you like about your current format.

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