For a long time, parts of me lived all over the internet. I was self-conscious of the fact that I was interested in too many things, and I was worried that people would get confused and leave if I put all these different parts together. I wrote seriously on Medium, expressed unfiltered, unedited thoughts on my public journal, hid my poetry on a partially-secret tumblr, hosted my interactive experiments on a whole separate site. I didn’t want people who were interested in my interactive experiments to see the embarrassing poetry.
Only upon hindsight and with a lot of self-examination, I realised I was the person most embarrassed of these parts of myself. I loved writing poetry but was afraid that they were crappy.
I don’t want to be embarrassed of myself anymore. I also believe that we shouldn’t only show things that is good, because what does good mean anyway? I never claimed to be a good poet or writer, I only want to be capable of expressing the true parts of myself, not hide them in some far-flung corners.
I may be writing about the motivation rearchitecting this site, but in essence I am also talking about my offline self. For most of my life I was afraid to show up as a whole person, because I didn’t want people to dislike the weird parts of me. So I became this person whom I thought I wanted to become, while I starved, suffocated and hid the parts of me which were probably the parts of me that really made me, me. I learned in reading books on psychotherapy that starving parts of ourselves would inevitably result in unconscious, unintended consequences. I will not go into that in this post, but all I can say is that I was a very incoherent, miserable person.
I want to try to honour all the different selves I have, so this site will be an expression of that. For now there are my journal entries and poetry, while I will work on importing my essays from Medium, and what excites me is the new sections I have in mind. I am intending to have a “notebooks” section where I’ll basically document everything I have learned – like a personal wikipedia. Accompanying it will be a feature named “collections”, where I’ll attempt to replicate my learning network idea in wordpress. It wouldn’t be a network anymore since it is just my data, but it would at least serve to be a personal library of things I have learned.
Through seeing some sites with a wealth of content, I realised I shouldn’t wait for the ideal form to exist. I will make do with what I know and have for now, and let the form evolve with my understanding and use.
I actually have the infrastructure in place to create notebooks and collections, but I haven’t had the space to work on the content. I am excited to see where all of this goes.
I’ll be writing about the technical details in another post. I wondered about mixing feelings, thought and code, but I realised people who read my writing are people capable of making choices and I shouldn’t have to decide or worry for them.
At the end, I’ll really like to have everything in one place because it is a pain in the ass to maintain so many sites, plus there are benefits like site-wide tags which will help to bring up related content even if they don’t exist in the same section.
Besides, I have heard from a friend that he can’t keep up with my writing because it exists in too many places. I hope this site will solve this problem, if not, subscribe to my tinyletter to get latest updates.
I haven’t had the chance to really work on the homepage, for now it is a bunch of curated content which I hope is a good reflection of the person I am now. I have deliberately kept the design efficient with no extraneous details. It may or may not stay this way depending on the evolution of my design philosophy. Please let me know if you come across any quirks.
Hopefully in the next post, I’ll be able to demonstrate some of the new content-types that will exist on this site.