Hitting the Big Red Switch

As you’ve probably noticed (and I’ve commented on from time to time) my blogging output over the past several years has fallen off precipitously, to the point where there has basically been nothing written on the blog at all in the past six months. I spent a while debating whether it was just time to go ahead and shut Panopticon Central down but in the end I decided that it’s likely that I’m going to have a few more things to say as I start to really settle in to the SQL Server team.

One thing I did decide I wanted to do was get out of the blog hosting business entirely. Those of you who have been exceptionally loyal readers may remember that this blog started off with a hand-built engine running on a server in my basement and has steadily moved in the direction of requiring less and less of my time to administer it and keep it running: first to using standard software (.TEXT and then SubText), then to a hosting provider (Server Intellect). To be honest, though, even administering a standard blog package on a hosting provider is more than I want to be doing. So after a lot of thinking I’ve decided to move wholesale to WordPress in the hopes that I can forever be done with such fun and exciting tasks as upgrading my blogging engine database.

That leaves the question, though, as to what to do with the large amount of previous stuff on the blog. Reading through the archives, most posts seemed to fall into the following categories, in order of frequency:

  1. Inside baseball discussions of the design/shipping process for previous versions of Visual Basic.
  2. Highly technical discussions of design decisions for features shipped in previous versions of Visual Basic.
  3. Random moment-in-time personal commentary.
  4. Highly confused (and often very inaccurate) discussions of now-cancelled or re-directed projects.

After some serious consideration, I’ve decided that rather than trying to bring all the past posts and comments over to WordPress, I’m going to wipe the slate clean and start over with a fresh, clean blog. It was surprisingly difficult to decide to toss out eight years of accumulated blogging detritus, but as I started to look through some of my old posts, I was convinced it was time. There just wasn’t much there that seemed particularly important to save for posterity. OK, maybe posts that fall into category #2 above might provide some value for people, but even a lot of that information is quietly starting to rot or become irrelevant. And, to be honest, I’d rather just expunge some of the things I talked about regarding future plans for Visual Basic (most of which haven’t turned out to be true) or Oslo/”M” (ditto), to the degree that’s possible in today’s Internet.

If you’re seeing this in a RSS reader, then you’ve probably got a narrow window of opportunity to grab what you want off the old blog, as the first step of the move is going to be redirecting my RSS feed to my WordPress blog but not moving anything else. After that’s been given a little while to settle, I’ll move the entire domain over and the old blog will be decommissioned. I will dump all of the old blog into a database, so if you find yourself missing some pearl of my wisdom, let me know and I can probably dig it up for you. There might also be some select gems that I might republish, but we’ll just have to see.

So thanks for still being a reader, and look for newer and fresher content soon! And you should also follow me on Twitter here.

[Ed note—in case you’re too young to remember it, the “big red switch” was the power switch on the back of the original IBM PC. With only floppy drives, turning off the power meant resetting the machine entirely and starting fresh.]

7 thoughts on “Hitting the Big Red Switch

  1. Alfred Thompson

    The Big Red Switch on IBM machines actually predates the PC. The early mainframes (I used an IBM 1130 in my college days) had this big red power buttons on the front of the computers. One was actually supposed to have the software shut the computer down but in an emergency the Big Red Button was there. Since this was an immediate hard shutdown it occasionally left the computer in, well let’s just say, less than ideal state and so bringing it back up was sometimes non-trivial.

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  3. jo0ls

    Argh, closed and deleted! Oh well, thanks for the hard work over the years Mr. V. I’ve always enjoyed your posts. I’m off to the wayback machine to get a cached copy of the page I was after…

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