To Blog Or Not To Blog

Welcome all normal readers and those just joining in from the Platform Software group. This entry is one my regular posts as well as an article for the current edition of the Platform Software group's internal newsletter. This is just a brief write up on why I blog on blogs.sun.com and why you should consider the same. In Sun's effort to be transparent I am posting this on my external blog. All feel free to join in on the discussion here or in the others that are posting on the topic: Josh, Bruce, Sean.

So why do I blog on blogs.sun.com?

Communication:

In the continued grow for remote working there needs to be a method to keep the lines of formal and informal communication open. The use of blogging also moves the water cooler conversations beyond that of the physical water cooler and to everyone who cares to read or google upon it. Back when I started to blog I would just speak about what was going on in my job role and interesting tools and techniques I was using to make my job more efficient. It was amazing to see how just posing a question or technique would start generation conversations with people that I would have never imagined knowing. Through those conversations, solutions to problems and honing techniques were solved and enhanced.

Evangelism:

What better way to show of Sun's transparency then to tell the world about the latest project you are working. Now one has to watch some of what they say and keep in mind the rules of engagement that go with blogging on b.s.c. The first project that was evangelizing was the SunRay@Home. I was able to get on the beta testing of this and was sharing the good, the bad and the uncertain issues around it. To the present, I am now excited to be talking about what Sun is doing in the Open MPI community and the opportunities that I am being faced with there.

Networking:

I started to touch on this above but blogging has really created social networking within and outside of Sun that I could have never imagined. I have had the opportunity to meet (mostly via phone or email) dozens of new colleagues here at Sun that I would have never met if it were not for blogging. Some might look at this as just a small thing but creating the network of colleagues helps to turn problems into solutions a lot faster if you know how you can contact and where the experts are. Aside from work there is just the pure social side to networking, from getting to know peoples families, hobbies, ambitions... friendships form. I can't believe the just from blogging I know who Mary is and chat with her on a regular basis or the real side to the Thin Guy and watching his family grow or finally meeting a fellow Sun employee and Michigan backpacker who is just a couple hours away. I can't wait for the day that I can meet up with these and many more folks to continue our friendships.

Self Promotion:

There is the simple truth that a portion of blogging is simple self promotion and getting ones name out there. Sure there are ways to hide who is doing the blogging and if that is what you want go for it. But, there is no harm in self promotion. If you are a subject matter expert or just know what the heck you are taking about then by all means talk about it and let the world know. One portion that can be a down fall and is one of my is it can also show off faults... I generally don't proof read my posts... so I find myself going back if errors are pointed out and fixing them.

Well there it is, why a simple software engineer blogs.

For what it's worth.

Comments:

I'm the one who is oh-so-lucky to have met you, Dan. (And Thin Guy and the rest of us...)

I think you've hit the nail on the head with this.

The crazy, crazy thing is that your beautiful little girl and my three munchkins will have a hard time even imagining the day that you could live a life without having a digital identity that's expressed through blogs, podcast, online social networking and so forth. It will be as bizarre to think we exsted without these tools. Just as it's bizarre to think that there was once a day (not too long ago), that you couldn't get access to the money in your bank account unless you physically went to the bank between the hours of 10-2.

mary

Posted by mary on September 26, 2006 at 08:44 AM EDT #

I agree Dan, it's the same reason that I started blogging and using the community.sun.com site. So far it's a fairly small group of Sun Alumni, but it's growing little by little each week.

Posted by Doug Curtis on October 01, 2006 at 01:11 PM EDT #

Nice tips about what a Blog could and should be :-)

Posted by Mayuresh Kathe on October 04, 2006 at 03:36 AM EDT #

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