It has been almost a year since I had a blog entry here. Not that I don’t have a lot to say! I am using twitter more, and I do have ideas for blog entries in cases where 140 characters is not enough. But there is limited time.
But I think something more fundamental is at work. What is the state of blogging, and, in particular, the operations research blogging world? It doesn’t appear all that healthy to me, but perhaps I am not seeing things correctly.
I think the blogging world was badly hurt by the cancellation of Google Reader. At least for me, Google Reader was a fast a convenient way to follow the blogging world. And, beyond me, I had creating a public list of OR Blogs, and a public feed of OR blog entries. It seemed to be well used, but those ended with the end of Reader. It is harder to get word out about OR blogging.
I have tried to continue aspects of these listings on this page with a feed of OR blogs (also in sidebar) but it is much less convenient.
I also think the relentless onslaught of comment spam discouraged (and perhaps still discourages) people from trying out blogging.
Today I went through my list of OR blogs to see who has posted in the past year, and was distressed to see how few have done so. Even with a pretty broad view of what an OR Blog is, it came to only about 40 people, with many of those (including myself!) barely meeting the “posted in the last year” requirement.
Those that remain are a fantastic source of information. I think particularly of Laura McLay’s Punk Rock Operations Research and Anna Nagurney’s RENeW as must-read entries. But there now seem to be few active bloggers.
Am I missing a ton of entries in the OR Blogging world (let me know if I am missing some from my list)? Has the world of twitter taken over from the long-form journalism that blogging provides?
In any case, I will make an effort to write more and welcome thoughts about how to strengthen the OR blogging community.