At the risk of sounding self serving, I would like to point out one significant number related to haub.net.
This journal entry is number 50.
Okay, again, I don't want to sound self serving. Instead, I'd like to do a little self reflection. If you're not in the mood, there are 49 other journal entries you can read. Or you can read a couple of short stories. Or you can go elsewhere.
I'm a little embarrassed by my first journal entry now that I've been writing for a while.
I was still trying to figure out what I thought about the world wide web, and I was reveling in the excitement generated by publishing in such a public and accessible place.
But the next day, I wrote my second journal entry. And while I was writing about the spring rain of Portland, I was outlining several of the main themes of my journal: Portland, nature, and those extraordinary moments that suddenly hit one, no matter how ordinary life is.
Of course, I didn't know back then that those themes would resurface so often. It just happens that those are things I think about a lot.
So with a little reflection, I can see this one thing: when I wrote my first journal entry, I was eager to join what I perceived as a tight circle of web writers and designers. I had a sense that this tightly-knit community was a good place to be.
I have learned instead that though there are communities out there in the internet world, they are disjointed and undefined, and each has its own special character.
And instead of joining one, I began to develop my own. In a sense.
Several people have emailed me over the months to tell me they were moved by a journal entry, or they liked the tone of a short story, or they just liked the overall feeling of my site. And some of those people have become excellent email pals.
So I have my own community of internet friends. Some of them publish or write, and others browse. Others barely ever use the internet.
My priorities changed quickly from the 10th to the 11th of April. And since then, they have developed slowly into something more complicated than one journal entry can explain.
Nowadays, I write for a lot of different reasons. Sometimes for therapy. Sometimes to connect with distant friends. Sometimes to celebrate certain events. Sometimes just because I love to write.
In the end, my first journal entry is only partly indicative of what has become my online experience.
All the hoo-haw about getting the word out is pretty much gone, except that I like connecting with people, and the only way to connect is if people find me, and the only way for them to find me is if the word gets out.
Of course, there are natural urges for fame and fortune, but I accept them as part of life, and usually I move on.
But the excitement in my first journal entry is still here. I love writing, I love publishing, I love playing.
So to all of you who come by, I want to say that I appreciate that you took the time to visit.
I hope there is something here for you, and if there isn't, there are thousands of other places you can look--on the web and elsewhere.
I usually look from the top of a mountain or from the side of a high rock wall or from a trail passing through a deep forest.
And I am often touched by an email someone sends or a postcard from a distant designer.
The power of the internet lies in its ability to help people connect across continents and across the world.
And the weakness of the internet lies deeply rooted in our weaknesses.
When we begin to believe that there is anything innately special about the internet, we are bound to end up swimming in disillusionment.
The power of the internet, as in anything, is deeply rooted in the people using it. And our success should be measured solely by our ability to connect with each other.