About this site

A journal of things that catch my eye or make me cross, by an ex-journalist and former liberal politician in East Anglia. Often contains photos, sometimes politics, never 1337, w00t!

It began in November 2002 when I, like a number of other people from cult TV fansite Tangent 21, discovered DeadJournal. I took the username _random_, because the sensible spelling of the name had already gone, and got stuck in.

After a while, it became obvious that if I wanted to follow the writing of those members of the T21 diaspora who’d gone to the perky, blue-themed LiveJournal instead of the angsty, black-and-purple DeadJournal, I’d need to sign up there too. The closest I could get to my preferred username there was _rand0m_, so I grabbed it and now had two identical journals running parallel.

In due course some of the American friends I’d made on DeadJournal decamped to JournalSpace, so in order to keep up with what they were up to I went there too. Once there, I found it easier to use and more customisable than either of the other two, so it became my main blog. My user name on there was random-incident and it was that version of the journal that was syndicated onto Lib Dem Blogs during the Campbell / Huhne / Hughes Lib Dem leadership election.

Trouble was, that meant I had three versions of this blog to update, each with different sets of readers and friends. And by then I was working as a web designer, so naturally I wanted to build a version that I could host on my own web space, using a design of my own. I picked the Serendipity blog engine, because on paper it blew everything else away with its combination of versatility and simplicity (and its cool abbreviation, s9y), and set it up on andthenhesaid.com.

But that meant if I wanted to post a passing thought I had to do it in four different places. And while s9y was good on paper, in normal use it was slow and clunky. It got too much, and to all intents and purposes it killed the blog in early 2007.

But by the end of the year I’d set up WordPress blogs on half a dozen domains I owned, and was finding the urge to write again. Plus, WordPress added the ability to import DeadJournal XML backup files. So I adapted the design I was using on some of my e-commerce sites, slapped WP onto andthenhesaid.com and imported as much of my archive as I could manage (a few months threw up error messages, but most of them made it).

So now I’m back in business, five years after I began and eight months after I thought I’d stopped for good.

I wonder what happens next?

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I'm Andy Darley. Sometimes I want to say things. This is where I do it.