Weblog: Day 2

July 12, 2006

Yesterday I did a lot of research on what kind of blogging platform I would use and what kind of tools I would use to build my site. Today, I finalized those decisions (Hosted, WordPress) and embarked on naming the site and registering a domain name.

Choosing a domain name
Once I decided to host my website and create my own domain name, the most difficult task was choosing/finding a suitable domain name. I knew that I might not get exactly the domain name I wanted at first so I decided to work on naming the blog in parallel with choosing a domain name. I went to Problogger.net again to find some good tips(link) for choosing a domain name. I was particularly interested in creating a name that was both memorable, and easy to speak aloud. I wanted the name to reflect the nature of the site, in particular the idea of week-long projects. However, I was concerned that including the timeframe in the name could reduce the flexibility of the site, or cause a disconnect if the site started down a different path (e.g. month-long projects).

Time to brainstorm. I went through a number of names like Project Week, A Week’s Work, and Design Week just to build up the foundation of what I was going for. All of these tended to fit into the “not-so-flexible” category but helped me think of some different paths to take. I started out looking at different ways to represent the ‘Week’ idea. Seven Day Projects, Seven Day Work, etc. Most of these were not very satisfying and still tended to be rather inflexible. So, I kept the idea of Seven Days in the back of my mind and started working on some different ways to represent the ‘project’ idea. I wanted to stay away from project for a couple of reasons. For one, after doing some initial searching on currently held domain names, it seems that ‘project’ has been a popular part of many already-registered domains. For another, I wanted something a little bit more memorable and unique.

For all the dictionaries and thesaurus tools on the web, I continue to go back to MS Word for looking up synonyms. I like the quickness with which I can track through synonyms or back out and start down a different path. The ones that stuck out most to me had an adventuresome feel to them. I felt that this suited my needs because I intended to pursue projects that were new to me and would present challenges and excitement. I came back from the word jungle with two treasures; Venture and Endeavor. Along the way I decided to give Design a shot as well. By the time I had come across my new words, I felt like the Week/Seven Day idea might work by being shortened to just Seven. Seven captured the original project per week intent but was ambiguous enough to be flexible. And so I returned to WHOIS to try out some new domains. Of VentureSeven.com, EndeavorSeven.com, and DesignSeven.com, only EndeavorSeven.com was available and ultimately, I had begun to enjoy the assonance of this name. On the downside, it isn’t very specific, but I think I steered myself away from anything very specific during the process and I don’t think I will regret it. And on the bright side, now I get to make up some fun back story about my previous six endeavors.

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Weblog: Day 1

July 11, 2006

Today I started working on my first project for my new blog. And that is… building a blog! I have a pretty good background in web development and web design, but I’ve never started a new website from scratch. There is a lot of information out there right now about blogging and there are a lot of options for going about it.

One of the simplest options I considered was a free hosted blog such as Blogger.com or WordPress.com. I felt like these would probably be sufficient for a while, but would ultimately not be flexible enough to support the features that I would like to implement in the future. Both of these have rather rigid page templates and not many options for adding files (pictures, plans, drawings, etc.). Problogger.net had a good overview article that discusses the reasons for going with such a blog.

There are also many good reasons for going with a host for a domain of my own. The biggest reason for me was flexibility. With my own hosted domain I would be able to choose how to design my blog and how to add content. I would have more options if I needed to change the amount of storage space or bandwidth I needed to use. In addition, hosting my blog in this way allowed me to choose a unique domain name. Ultimately, these are the things I desired so that I could start simply and have lots of options to increase the value of my blog as it developed.