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23 May 2002

A brief note of explanation about some restructuring of this website: as of today, the three 'weblog' pages, Field Inspections, Media Refractions, and Aether Vibrations, have been given their own top-level, permanent URLs. This means that you can bookmark them (please do), which was previously not practical, since each log had a new page each month, with a separate URL containing the date embedded into the path and name. While the monthly pages continue to exist, as archives, they now function as mirrors of the top-level pages, containing permanent anchor-links to each item, in the manner that most weblogs are now implemented.

(The fourth 'weblog' page, E-Publications, will be moved [back] into the Monitor group, along New Books and New Magazines, since that page, even though it's primarily about content on the web, is less a weblog that a periodic listing.)

The change in structure is a response to a basic dilemma in website design. If you post new material on new, separately-dated pages, then there's no fixed URL (other than the homepage) for anyone to bookmark. If you post new material on a permanent, fixed-URL page, then periodically archiving old content frustrates anyone who follows a bookmark, or search engine link, looking for material that's no longer there. The solution weblog designers have developed is to do both: post new material both on the fixed URL page and on an archive page simultaneously, with permanent links on the latter, made clearly visible from the fixed page for easy bookmarking. That's what I've now done with the FieldI, MediaR, and AetherV pages which, though only described here as weblogs for the past year, have been part of this website since mid-1998 or before.

Similarly, I'm considering reverting to this scheme for certain other pages that contain regularly updated material that browsers might want direct access to without clicking through the Homepage. The convention listings, for instance, or current author events. Anything else? Feedback welcome, as always.

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