Today I finished up April’s ‘Domain Spring Cleaning’ by finally closing my last big site:

From 2006 thru 2012 was a blogging information website. With the tagline “The Knowledge You Need For The Blog You Want” I discussed WordPress topics each month, from setup to writing to howtos and more – 79 “ActiveBlogging Reports” in all, for a total of well over 1/4 million words! And that doesn’t include the many custom plugins written, extra reports, occasional video, and of course, the Top 10 Tricks Guide for WordPress.

And while it was fun, in 2012 I decided to shift focus. While I enjoyed WordPress, both programming and using it, I didn’t want the rest of my life to be about a tool. And that’s what WP is: a tool.

For instance, I have two Estwing hammers in my toolbox. Made of a solid piece of metal for both head and handle, they are a joy to work with, and practically drive the nail in all by themselves. But as much as I enjoy and recommend them, I don’t want to go to seminars discussing hammers, or set up a shop to teach people how to use hammers. From time to time I’ll occasionally drive a nail or two, but go at it full-time? No more.

Instead, the world has big problems, and I’d rather work on them. Since 2011, I’ve been working on a Braille Reader. Progress is slow, but my goal is a low-cost version that will enable the blind in third world countries to ‘feel’ the Internet.

When I started, Braille readers were 7-10 thousand dollars, minimum. Three years later you can find some at 1/2 to 1/3 that price. Why? I have no proof, but sometimes lowering prices that much is used to discourage others from entering the market or innovating, effectively getting rid of competition. And if my work had anything to do in even a small way to help ‘scare up’ some price reductions for the Blind, I would find that extremely satisfying.

The world has a lot of problems. Working on solutions for the real world has been more enjoyable than teaching people how to wield a tool better. But make no mistake: I made a lot of friends through the site, and I thoroughly enjoyed helping them understand WordPress better. It simply isn’t the right time for that anymore.

Nonetheless, you were a part of my life for a half dozen years, ActiveBlogging – I’ll miss you.


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