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I haven’t blogged for a few weeks so it was a bit of a surprise to find that WordPress.com has had a bit of a makeover when I logged back in to it today. It’s got a bit of a fresher feel with new colours and fonts, although stuff seems, so far, to mainly be in the same places it was before.
As far as I can tell most of the options and features seem to be the same, but they just look a bit different. I’m sure I’ll find a few subtle changes, but probably within a few days I’ll have forgotten what things used to be like before.
It reminds me of a comment made by one of the presenters at FOTE last year, that ‘when was the last time that amazon sent someone round to your house and said: ‘sorry, we’ve changed the interface a bit, would you like some training?”. I don’t recall seeing a message, other than one from WordPress pointing out I’d been blogging for four years (although a bit erratically – in time terms or in terms of content and style maybe?). But it doesn’t really matter to me that I haven’t read a set of release notes, gone through a training session, or spent time trying stuff out. Try it out as you go, learn as you go along, dive right in. As someone who as worked with IT systems for years that’s a bit of an IT trait, but it looks like something that is now a mainstream expectation. Don’t expect me to learn your interface first, expect me to try it and learn as I go along. If I don’t like it, I might tell you, might live with it, or might switch to an alternative.
Just recently wordpress.com has started to flag up the number of blog posts that you’ve published with the sort of message you see on the left. As well as telling you how many blog posts you’ve published you also get a target generated by wordpress. When I first saw it I thought OK, so there’s a goal I wonder what’s at the end of the goal. Well, actually, nothing, other than a seamingly random quotation, Oh, and another target. So I’m really not quite sure of the point of it. Done 101 blog posts, well, why not aim for 105. Well, I will write more if I’ve something I want to say, but I’m not sure about an artificial target that has no objective other than achieving the target.
Now I realise that wordpress.com is free at the point of use to the blogger, so maybe you shouldn’t expect anything extra for nothing, but blog more just to reach some arbitrary target doesn’t seem like much of an incentive. But maybe the prize is the little quotation and I’ve missed the point entirely?