Posted October 27, 2006on:
Hello. Welcome to my blog.
My plan is for it to be a development journal for the video game that I’m working on. I’m hoping that explicitly stating my short-term goals and posting them publicly will help keep me focused and motivate me (the game is waaay late, already). I’ll also post whatever comes to mind, which will probably be technical stuff quite often, but I’ll try and keep it categorised so that you can easily find the non-technical bits if you want to.
Of course, it might just end up being a huge timesink, but I thought it’d be worth a try (John Carmack said if you can’t decide between two methods, try both and see which one works best). Even choosing the best way of setting up a blog took longer than I would have thought possible. I’ve ended up with blog hosting at WordPress.com, domains from GoDaddy, free DNS from ZoneEdit and file hosting that comes with my e-mail account at FastMail. I do tend to do things thoroughly — without really considering if it’s the most valuable use of time. That would probably be what I’d say when they ask what your weaknesses are in a job interview.
I went with WordPress.com because WordPress looks lovely and I don’t want the hassle of having to maintain an installation of it myself (keeping up with security updates and the like). I’m quite happy to delegate that job to someone else. WordPress.com also supports the most important feature of any online service, which is the ability to export your data and take it somewhere else. The downside is that I don’t really like any of the themes that are available and rolling your own costs extra, but that’s something that I can change later if I feel the need so it’s nothing to worry about.
I really dislike the hard-selling GoDaddy web shop, but I can’t complain about the price (especially with coupons) and you only have to look at their web site once a year to renew, so I went with them anyway. They’re also the biggest registrar by some margin so they won’t be going anywhere soon. I have a fear that I could lose my domains if the registrar went bust. I don’t know how well founded that fear is; presumably there are procedures for that sort of thing that I could look up.
I spent some time over the past few days thinking about setting up a side business as a GoDaddy reseller (their reseller brand is Wild West Domains). I figured that there would be lots of people like me who know exactly what they’re looking for, just want to buy domains and find the GoDaddy marketing onslaught distasteful. I could set up a nice clean web site with a cool (maybe AJAXy) interface, charge the same as GoDaddy and scrape 50 cents off the top of each purchase. I’d buy some Google AdWords ads for the keyword “GoDaddy” (amazingly the only ad on that keyword at the moment is from GoDaddy themselves) and the ad would say:
$6.95 domains – GoDaddy prices without the hard sell – justthedomainsplease.com
I’ve pretty much decided against it though, because I don’t have the $250 annual charge for Wide West Domains and with razor-thin margins the business would have to be fairly successful to recoup it. Also, in typical GoDaddy fashion, they don’t make the API documentation publicly available so you don’t even get to see what you’re working with until you’ve signed up.
Phew! So, I’ve made my first blog post and it’s a long meandering mess… That’s about par for the course, right?