Yesterday I launched a new project, simply called Thing To Read Online. It lives at this url, thingstoread.online. I know, last year I said that one of the resolutions for this 2018 was to not start another side project. But what can you do. Let me tell you why I decided to code and ultimately push online this project.
My history with blogs
At the beginning of 2017, I found myself sitting in the kitchen, at 5am, drinking a coffee and coding a new website. I have an history of silly one page websites but this time I decided to code something different. It wasn’t really a blog, but rather a self hosted, twitter like, personal feed. The idea was to let people know about my current projects and ideas. Why? Who knows. Needles to say, that didn’t last very long. I quickly binned that site and went back to something smaller, a list of links and call it a day. But then, this idea of putting into words thoughts I had in my head came back, and so I started tweaking that design again. Fast forward to today and my site is a blog. I’m late to the blog party, I’m well aware of that. Many people say that blogs are dead, that the future belongs to vlogs and video. Others say the exact opposite. Personally, I think that both have their place in this bizarre digital world. Written words are here to stay and so are blogs.
Why this project
One of the main problems I was personally facing was how to find good content to consume. These days most people use social media as a funnel for their digital consumption. Which is ok, I guess, but I’m currently out of the social media world, I don’t have a facebook account, I suspended both twitter and instagram and I don’t use any other social media platform. So that wasn’t really an option for me personally. What was left was to use the internet as it was originally intended: start from point A and click my way through it, exploring the content in an organic way. And this is exactly what I’m doing right now. But in the process I’m also collecting these sites to help other people.
This project is my attempt to do something different with my time, to consume content that’s meaningful and thought provoking. To help connect people who create good content to people who are looking for that great content. Because sadly great content is not always trendy and viral. Good content is, more often than not, very long and challenging. It requires time and time is a precious resource in 2018 World Wide Web.
The web that many connected to years ago is not what new users will find today. What was once a rich selection of blogs and websites has been compressed under the powerful weight of a few dominant platforms. This concentration of power creates a new set of gatekeepers, allowing a handful of platforms to control which ideas and opinions are seen and shared.
So what can you do? Well you can check the site and click on those links. I’m trying to add links to both the site and the RSS feed. If you don’t know what an RSS feed don’t worry, I’ll blog about RSS soon but you can find plenty of resources on the web if you want to know more right now. If you have blogs worth reading please, send them my way. And if you want to simply chat about the topic my email is always available.