I'm a Christian, a designer, and a gadget fan who lives in Cheltenham, UK.

This is my blog, a creative outlet to mess around and play with as well as a place that logs my thoughts and inspirations.

About Me ›

For a while now I’ve owned the domain philbowell.me, I bought it while it was cheap and to make sure no one else got hold of it and thus cause con­fu­sion with the domain of this blog. I’ve won­dered what to do with it for most of that time, briefly it act­ed as a micro-blog but I merged that with this site a few months back. This evening while doing a bit of intro­vert­ing I picked up my iPad (where I designed it and set the basic html struc­ture), then my Mac­Book (where I imple­ment­ed the CSS) and end­ed up with a new web page. A small about me should any­one stum­ble upon it. The only thing I’ve yet to do is opti­mise it for an iPhone sized dis­play but it’s work­ing pret­ty well on an iPad sized screen and upwards.

A Blogging Challenge

I’ve writ­ten 442 posts on this site. The first one was writ­ten on 17th Jan­u­ary 2011, that’s five and half years ago. It equates to around 80 posts per year and about 1.5 posts per week. It’s not bad going, but it could be better.
Dur­ing those times there’s been many spells of inac­tiv­i­ty and many spells of mul­ti­ple posts per day, this is what I would like to change most about my site, the incon­sis­tent post­ing pat­terns. Last night I found myself brows­ing the web in a way that I’ve not done for a long time. I end­ed up on a rab­bit trail of per­son­al blogs, one that start­ed with a site I sub­scribe to that I kicked off into safari on my iPad. It felt like redis­cov­er­ing the inter­net again. This was what got me into the blog­ging scene way back in 2005 when I start­ed my first blog. There was a line in one of the arti­cles I read that res­onat­ed with me. It was feed­back that the author received regularly,

stop­ping blog­ging reg­u­lar­ly was one of peo­ple’s biggest regrets
I cer­tain­ly wish I had­n’t stopped. Or I should say, I wish I had­n’t let the habit slip. 

Since I start­ed blog­ging way back in 2005 I’ve had two main sites. The first site, which sad­ly is no longer in exis­tence, last­ed from 2006 until this site start­ed in 2011. It was my first prop­er for­ay into inter­net pub­lish­ing and as a result I did­n’t real­ly think too much about what I would post. Top­ics were wide in range but nat­u­ral­ly reflect­ed my per­son­al inter­ests, some­thing which I feel has been lost a bit on this site. Which is some­what iron­ic giv­en that this is the site which bears my full name in the url.
With that in mind it’s time to declare that this is the first post in a new chal­lenge I’m set­ting myself. I want to recap­ture the joy that I had when I first start­ed pub­lish­ing on the web. It was some­thing I enjoyed and did every­day, and so, that’s my new chal­lenge. I want to post to this site every­day until the end of the year. Some will be links, some will be orig­i­nal writ­ing, but all of it will reflect me and my inter­ests. I’m going to try my utmost not to pick and choose too much of what I write, I will sim­ply write and post each day from now until Decem­ber 31st.

Just Hit Command‑N

Just hit Command‑N. Those are the words I just read in a post from Man­ton Reece, and so that’s what I’m doing. I may not be a devel­op­er or some­one who’s had much of an audi­ence in my life on the Inter­net. How­ev­er, for the last few weeks I’ve want­ed to start post­ing to my site again but for what­ev­er rea­son I’ve nev­er known what to write. So here I am press­ing the plus but­ton in Ulysses on my iPad and writing.
I remem­ber when I first got in to the whole blog­ging way of things. I was­n’t real­ly selec­tive about what I wrote about, I would just write what­ev­er came to me. Of course there was a set of themes that would be cov­ered, but they weren’t cho­sen with inten­tion, there were just what my inter­ests were. They were me. Since dis­cov­er­ing Man­ton’s blog towards the end of last year I’ve been remind­ed of my ear­ly blog and the ear­ly blogs of those who I still fol­low. They were gen­uine and full of inter­est­ing things because they weren’t over­ly focused, they were just per­son­al sites. Of course those sites, at least the ones that are still going, are still inter­est­ing but they’ve become more focused over time. Although that focus may have hap­pened by a nat­ur­al evo­lu­tion as peo­ple found what real­ly makes them tick, those sites are inter­est­ing in a dif­fer­ent way now. Thank­ful­ly what I’m start­ing to see, and what I hope I con­tin­ue to see, is more vari­ety and new sites that are per­son­al and reflect the whole of the per­son who writes them. That’s what drew me to this hob­by we call blog­ging, and it’s what I hope will help me return.
So here’s to new begin­nings, to start­ing to write more and to being less both­ered about what I should write about and instead just post­ing what feels right.

Content Origins ›

A sub­ject I’ve been think­ing about a lot late­ly is that of the per­son­al site and own­ing con­tent. Since I dis­cov­ered the microblog­ging “move­ment” I’ve been think­ing about how it should affect my post­ing to sites like Twit­ter. Man­ton’s thoughts in his post Long-form writ­ing as a fil­ter are echo­ing where I’m start­ing to land. I want to post/write for this site more, but I strug­gle to think of con­tent. Maybe if I switch to orig­i­nat­ing all my con­tent on my site first, those ini­tial thoughts will grow into more sub­stan­tial posts, or remain as micro-posts pushed to Twitter.