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Jan 12 2010

Stop Blogging

I mean it. All of you people are writing fantastic, useful articles about code, methods, and technologies, but you’re putting them in blog posts — a date-based format that encourages us to leave things as they were, historically.

And with any blog post about technology, it gets stale. It gets outdated. And in the worst case, several months or years later, it’s just absolutely wrong.

As a content consumer, sometimes we can tell. Some of us might pay attention to the post date, some of us might be deep enough into the subject to tell outdated information from fresh. But lots of people can’t. And keeping incorrect information on the web, simply for historical reasons, is — well, just selfish.

Looking in the Mirror

I’m only saying this to you because I said it to myself about six months ago. I’m annoyed that this very site contains bad information in its archives. So I’ve decided to clean it up. Yes, this may mean broken links in some places on the web. But a broken link is better than misleading someone who is genuinely looking for information.

We have a responsibility, as publishers, to maintain and cultivate our sites. I agree with archiving our opinions, or our experiences, but keeping old, outdated code, examples, or resources isn’t helping the web.

Our Solution

We’ve decided to maintain a resources area where we will post examples, data, and code samples. We will likely refer to them in our blog, or make posts when we create or update them, but those posts won’t get stale. The content of the resource, however, might. So we’re making a decision to regularly go through our resources to tweak them, rewrite them, or sometimes even delete them1, if it makes sense.

Keep in mind that this is a process. We’re not done moving old posts that should be resources, and some of our resources may already need a little updating. It will take work, but we think it’s worth it.

So what do you do to keep the web fresh?