#This is my blog, deal with it

I’ve been thinking about setting up a place to write for a while now. This process started in Cape Town last October (2003), while attending the e-Research Africa conference. There were several misrepresentations flying around about work that I was doing, and I realised that the only person to blame (for lack of a better word) was myself. Out of sheer frustration, I started writing. I wanted channels for the ops team, for the general public and for those special beasts that sit between the infrastructure and the scientists, who pull the magic strings that make the applications churn out the pretty pictures we often call science.

Blogger wasn’t cutting it

The work that we were doing on the national grid was too easy to dismiss because it wasn’t described adequately. True, there’s a website, but this is too onerous to keep up to date. I figured I’d just set up a couple of blogs on blogger - I mean, I use google for almost everything else, plus they have a good set of services built into it - analytics, comments, hosting, etc. I set up 3 different blogs there and spent a little bit of time tweaking the layout. It wasn’t fun and I didn’t quite get what I wanted. However, it must be said that the interface just sucks - tricky little wysiwyg editor or plain old html - no thanks. Then Liam tipped things in favour of Github’s favour one day recently and I thought I’d take a crack at setting up a personal space for myself, which I hadn’t done yet over at blogger. Oh boy, was I glad !

Coding and writing

Finally, I’m in a place in my life where I’m quite comfortable both with coding and writing. Github has really brought these two things together for me - just the right combination of doing and expressing. For now, I’ll be talking mostly about the work I’m doing on the CHAIN-REDS and ei4Africa projects - mostly about supporting the development of an African e-Infrastructure. But hopefully there’ll be some time to work in some personal perspectives here too (and maybe that can wean me off the dreaded ‘book’ !)

After all, scientists are people too.