The Blog (the question Why)

Rather than me spending time outside in the hot summer like sun, I have being sitting here at my desk, in front of this monitor, typing e mails and replying to letters. At some point too, I’ll need to fit in at least an hour or two of homework/studying for classes on Monday. But, like the technocrat, that I think I am, I wanted to touch upon some of the issues that I experienced while setting up this WeBlog. So, here it goes….

I actually jumped on the Blog train about 2 year age when I used my old static web site as a means of posting news and information for family and friends. Then, I never heard the Name Blog, nor the concept of it until December of 2002 while at college. I was working on a paper. One of the sources referred to a political Bolg that some politician used to account for his leadership race here in British Columbia. I never thought much about it then, until on CBC Radio, several news and commentary programs were interviewing people who were “Bloggers”. So I wrote down their url and typed them in. I was impressed at what I saw. They had interactive web pages that you could comment to and share your ideas with the author’s -like posting your own bit to add with that person’s thoughts. I thought to myself, “I want one!”

I asked the current ISP that I was using if I could do such a thing. They told that I would have no problems with the package I had, but to use the tools that interactive bloggers have, I would need PHP 4, and MySQL. They said that due to security reasons, CGI Bins and other “add ons” were not supported, I would need to find a server provider that would support all this. This means spending money.

I started to shop around. At first, information was hard to come by because of my ignorance in the field. Then, as I slowly started getting acquainted with the jargon, and reading tons of web sites on blogging, I found a service provider that was right in my own back yard. So I phoned them up and to my astonishment, they were not as expensive as I thought they would be. OK, $100.00 per year would be a little steep for the average teenager who wanted to do this, but after I set up this web space up, I started finding services that proved free blog space that you could try out for a while.

So, what do you need for your interactive blog?

I chose to have my own domain name. That was about $25.00 for the year. Then I had to find a good package with the right tools and means for setting up and running the blog: PHP support, MySQL , a FTP program and of course, pearl for spell-checkers and CGI. You can download pre-made packages that require little set-up time that are written in PHP and sit in your web space. Like the one I’m using now, the set up was about 5 minutes. But if you want the interactive web site, you must have MySQL, a database that works with PHP to collect and maintain all of your posts and comments.

Of course, if you are like me, a person who likes to code a little, and want to go beyond the scope of HTML, this was the perfect steppingstone. I’m now coding in PHP, recreating this site and slowly evolving it into something bigger and better then the little static blog I had 2 years ago.

I hope you are inspired as I was, and got something from this post. Feel free to post a comment below.

Thomasso 😀

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