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I read a few questions about how you can benefit from reading blogs, but I wonder what is really the impact of writing one.

I had mine, but I neglected it (not having the time, not having fun with it (and I really try to avoid things that are not fun)) and now it's dead.

Should I try harder on it? Or I can keep developing (pun) my abilities without having to maintain a blog?

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closed as primarily opinion-based by MichaelT, GlenH7, Robert Harvey, david.pfx, Ampt Jul 22 at 15:48

Many good questions generate some degree of opinion based on expert experience, but answers to this question will tend to be almost entirely based on opinions, rather than facts, references, or specific expertise.If this question can be reworded to fit the rules in the help center, please edit the question.

8 Answers 8

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I would say yes, you should.

I find I often think I have a good grasp of a subject, but when I blog about it I sometimes need to go research some of the finer details. Writing about a subject often helps you understand what you know and what you don't know.

It also helps you get involved with the development community which can only help you become a better programmer. Getting other people's opinions about what you're writing is the best way of figuring out how well you know a subject.

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9  
Highly agree with the "Writing about a subject often helps you understand what you know and what you don't know." This is the main reason I blog. –  sp0rus Sep 17 '10 at 13:47
    
Writing about a subject does not relate directly to the act of blogging. You can write a design document for your software and it could help you to better understand your problem and solutions. –  Jérôme Radix Sep 17 '10 at 14:32
    
+1, yes you should. Writing things down really matters. You may get feedback, you might interact with people who are better than you and learn something. Most importantly, you have a reference for things you may forget one day.. :) –  dr Hannibal Lecter Oct 7 '10 at 17:27
    
@Jérôme, blogs tend to be less formal than design documents. I think that the ability to talk about a difficult subject in layman terms is a very important skill that blogging helps you train. –  user1249 Nov 27 '10 at 12:41

You might differentiate between a tech-blog and a general one. The later is, in my opinion, a waste of time. We've all had one and I believe, most of us made the same experience u did. As for the first, I'd agree with my previous speakers. Posting about stuff forces -or at least should- you to get into a topic and therefore helps improve your skills.

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Tech blogs tend to turn into notes-to-self disguised as tutorials. –  user1249 Nov 27 '10 at 12:51

Yes, the effort to formulate your ideas into something publishable requires a great understanding of the topic you are discussing.

As an added bonus it will increase your desire to become an expert in some area of programming. This stems from the desire to actually have people read your blog.

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It won't make you a better programmer, but it'll make you a better leader.

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I don't think it will make you a better programmer, except perhaps in that it helps with practising communication skills.

However, it can be a useful way of documenting things that you've done, if only for your own benefit. It may also open up opportunities. If your blog establishes you as somebody who knows what they're talking about there may potentially be job offers or consulting opportunities as a result.

I've had a blog for about 4 years, although it's not always frequently updated. I initially started it to have somewhere to provide details of a couple of open soure projects I was working on. I also wrote a few opinionated articles but not so much recently. Most recently I just announce new releases of my projects and document things I've done in case somebody (usually me in 6 months time) needs to do the same thing.

I've had a couple of enquiries about consulting work as a result of things I've written, but nothing that I've actually ended up getting involved in.

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It forces you to put your findings into words, which is frequently an exercise in itself. Presenting ideas and findings may require you to do additional thinking to make the logic shine out clearer. Doing so will make you a better programmer. –  user1249 Nov 27 '10 at 12:50

A blog in itself will not make you a better programmer, it's programming that will make you a better programmer.

Posting articles on a blog helps you clear your understanding of some notions. It is certainly interesting to publish medium to long articles on a personal blog, but it would be better to publish thoses articles on technology dedicated sites : you'll have a wider audience and comments : comments are the more important things to learn. They are a feedback to your ideas.

Answers to very narrow technical questions have a greater impact on sites like stackoverflow.com. Your answers will help more directly the developers community.

See also blogging about blogging.

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Who is blogging about blogging? (this is not a blog engine) –  jmfsg Sep 17 '10 at 14:26
    
This kind of question seems like a blog post, and answers seem like comments... –  Jérôme Radix Sep 17 '10 at 14:29
    
I believe that blogging will make you a better programmer as it forces you bring different ideas that you have into a coherent form –  Casebash Sep 18 '10 at 3:43

Any forum where you explain your ideas in a way that helps you think through them will help you become a better programmer. Even if you think you have something all figured out, explaining it to others will clarify things, and expose the places where there are holes in your understanding. This can be a blog, but giving talks to local users groups, colleges, or maybe even high schools would work as well. You can also write a paper for an organization like the ACCU. Even answering questions on places like Stack Overflow will help you improve.

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not really ... but regular participation in sites like StackOverflow or technical forum is goood

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