Recently, I had a bit of a falling out with my ISP – this was related to the bricking of an internet router, and complicated by arcane corporate bureaucracy.
The short of all this chaos and churn is that my internet service was interrupted for a few days, and chaotic for a few days on either end of that outage. As a result, my entries via DYNDNS were hopelessly disconnected from reality, and the handful of sites still connected to my home server were disconnected from the aether.
So, I decided to migrate this blog to my paid hosting account – I still have and use Livejournal, but I distrust it implicitly since it was bought by the Russian mob, so I cross-syndicate there, but want to keep proprietary contol over my years-worth of writing.
This move has been quite a mental process.
The actual transfer of files and settings was not a big deal – that was a couple hours at most. What changed is that my new install of WordPress is apparently now cross-syndicated to the blog post services out there. This means that I’ve become a target for smapbots that leave comments.
Interestingly, these comment bots come from all over, and have quite a wide range of styles and content to post. In certain cases, I think, to get past automated filters, they leave what seems like constructive comments. In other places, they are obvious link touts. Occassionally, I get Finnegan’s Wake-esque content, with a link embed in the account name.
The bots have been commenting on over nine years of content.
_THAT_ has been what is rough – I have taken these automated comments showing up in my moderation folder as a form of daily mental exercise and a dash of oracular ghost-in-the-machine. Some of the posts commented on are dead-link web content. Some are old writing segments. Some are inside jokes of yesteryear made public.
All of them have been things that I would never mine in my own data collection. I have gotten 177 spambot posts since last week, and none of them have been on what I would consider the dozen and change posts worth anything in the thousand-something I’ve written. A number of them, however, have driven me down roads of nostalgia and past situation I often avoid – my reactions, in some cases, are identical to the reasons I avoid the issues in the first place. In some cases, however, I have found my mindset to be better or worse than the sentiment in the post, or the power of the comments.
It has been interesting.
I assume once my validity as a data mining enterprise is exhasuted, the comments will subside somewhat, and, after that, the outpouring of nostalgia will die down a bit. For now though, it is an interesting intellectual process – almost like having a future curator pick what is relevant out of your life, and forcing you to think about those things, even if you see them as marginal in most cases.
I’ll have to work on the insights all this braintime is providing sometime soon, in the near future hopefully.