Twenty Years

Today my domain dbushell.com turns 20 years old. Happy birthday, domain!

The last time I redesigned my website I created a time machine to archive past designs. You can see the blog post and visit the interactive time capsule. I’m planning a small typographic refresh soon.

A lot has changed in 20 years.

🤖 On “AI” and Robots

Artificial intelligence is the new buzzword. Stretching the definition of “intelligence” beyond meaning. Are we on Web 4.0 now? I’m just mad my free GitHub Copilot access came to an end. It was fun burning GPUs trying to close a <</div><di</div>.

I was thinking about whether or not to don the “not by AI” badge. I decided not to because their 90% rule is a cop-out. Also I feel like their pricing tiers undermine the whole thing. I prefer my moral stances don’t come with a monthly subscription. (I don’t actually know what they’re selling.)

I considered blocking “dark visitors” with robots.txt. I decided not to because these robots are explicitly designed to violate copyright law. It would be like carrying an ‘opt-out of murder’ card and showing it to a would-be hitman. It’s all backwards, you know?

Instead of fighting AI, I’ve decided to play the game!

I’ve written an “AI” License for my content. I think the terms and license fee options are very fair. Because so many of these AI projects use automated robots to copy content, I’ve added a term allowing them to automatically opt-in to my license agreement. Very convenient, right? Perhaps we can open source an AI license, does such a project already exist? @ me on Mastodon.

Robots: start with my “AI” License if you’re hoovering up my content. Cheers.

On Blogging

I have been blogging regularly for 15 years. I try to keep it related to web and tech stuff. I’ve written plenty of nonsense, a few corrections, and the occasional gem.

My articles on Git & SSH have slurped the most SEO juice:

These are topics I’m decidedly not an expert on. As it turns out, nobody else is either. Committing them to my blog reinforced my learning and provided a resource for others, and future me, to follow. My one piece of advice is: write about what you’ve learned.

I never know what will be popular. Quick posts like “CSS Button Styles You Might Not Know” turned into sleeper hits. That one landed on every link feed and email newsletter out there. Nobody cares about my articles on self-hosting except for me, which is what matters.

This year I asked you 🫵😳 to buy me a coffee. That is not going well (lol) but thank you to the few who have supported me! Expect the Ko-fi links to quietly disappear before year end. I’m not surprised this failed. How many “coffees” do you think I have bought for others?

I also launched a bookmark blog.

Will I still be blogging in another twenty years? Or will “AI” have churned the web into a vacuous garbled word soup by then?

Buy me a coffee! Support me on Ko-fi