Canadian author and pythonista.

I'm Back

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hello

Hi there, I’m Dusty. Welcome to my resurrected blog.

I started a tech blog in 2007 that I maintained with regular posts for several years. While it was well-regarded at the time, I took it down in late 2016 for several reasons. First and most obviously, I became extremely busy, and simply did not have time to keep up the schedule and quality of my writing. That reduced availability coincided with my taking on a new role with Facebook in late 2013. Working on infrastructure at Facebook scale requires understanding problems and technologies that are only interesting to the largest dozen or so tech companies in the world, and many of them are proprietary. As a result, I ran out of blog topics that would be of interest to the general population. Third, the blog was throwing frequent database errors and I didn’t have the time or interest to maintain it. I figured my audience would mostly have abandoned it by that point due to infrequent posting and intermittent availability.

I considered trying to archive the posts. But little of the existing content was still relevant; relevance is fleeting in the tech industry. In addition, when I went to review them I discovered that I had written a lot of opinionated pieces over the years. I no longer agreed with all of those opinions, and I disagreed with the sanctimonious tone of most of them. Partially due to whatever restraint comes with age, and partially because of exceptional ‘people skills’ mentorship I received during my time at Facebook, I did not appreciate the attitude I had once fostered.

My plan for this new site is to focus on the topics I am most familiar with and interested in, namely programming and technology, writing, and mental health. There will be a strong focus on Python, but I tend to deep dive into other topics and languages when the mood takes me. Historically, I’ve used Python for infrastructure and web development, but I’ve recently taken an interest in machine learning, so you’ll probably see some of that.

I don’t intend to write a lot of opinionated articles or anything terribly political (topics better suited to my Facebook friends-only feed). Some of my writing on mental health may touch on both politics and opinion because it’s a topic that’s in the public eye and I think it’s important to keep it there.

If I write a post that gets thousands of reads in the first day and then drops off to nothing, then I will see that article as a failure. I don’t want to write-content free or click-bait posts or to thrive on controversy. In my old blog, I was most proud of the posts that were still receiving a few hundred reads per day months or even years after being published, and I intend to maintain this objective.

This blog is not ad-supported. I do hope it will help sell a few copies of my books or steer other income-generating opportunities my way, but the blog is not intended to be an independent revenue stream.

For transparency, comments are powered by Disqus, and I use Google Analytics to help me understand which articles are most relevant. I acknowledge that those sites are tracking you if you are not using specific tracker-blocking browser extensions. My web host also collects basic traffic logs. The social icons in the right side-bar are just icons with links and are not tracking you.

Lastly, a little attribution. I’m statically hosting this site on Canadian Web Hosting. The static files are generated from Markdown using Hugo. At the time of this post, it’s rendered with the Hyde-y Hugo theme.

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