Editorial: Notes v. aRticles and Tuts

My original plan for hack-r.com was to be a blog composed of code snippets and miscellaneous notes, taken from my own Evernote notes with only minimal editing.

This accomplished a couple of goals — it gave me a practical use for my notes and allowed me to contribute knowledge to “the community” (by which I could mean the Data Science “community”, but by which I effectively just mean the Internet) in a time-effective manner. It also used to provide me with some small amount of ad revenue until

  1. ¬†some visitors complained that the ads detracted from the blog’s UX and
  2. Google AdSense froze my account anyway due to spammer-hackers*** spam-dexing a network Russian international dating websites with referrer bombs used some clever hack to route promote their site by sending zombie traffic to a non-existing referrer URL appended to my domain (and thousands of other folks’) domains like mine

However, I came to a bit of a dilemma. The short code snippets and brief programming notes give me a fair amount of search engine traffic, but they were burying the smaller number of higher-quality, longer-length tutorials and articles (“aRticles”, for you R devotees) that folks from the R-Bloggers crowd come looking for.

My initial solution was to link those tuts and articles from the homepage, but this seemed insufficient. I could solve the issue with tags, except to follow the protocol used by R-Bloggers and others, only my article-style posts should receive have “R” tags whereas I have lots of snippets and quick-tips which need that tag to be properly indexed. Even if I did conform to that standard, it would only solve the problem for R-related material.

I could create completely separate blogs for the 2 types of content, but it would waste precious time in duplicating logistical tasks, would require me to share even more links for such a humble amount of content, and since I love this domain name I don’t want to detract from it with some other closely related but different domain.

Let me know if you have any thoughts. I haven’t decided, but I think I may try forcing users entering through the homepage to chose between the 2 distinct sections of the site, each directing to a subdomain with a separately-indexed blog.


*** More power to them! I think it’s pretty funny and clever, though I figured the folks back in Mountain View (i.e. Google) were smart enough to be able to just adjust the ad revenue calculation to remove that part of the traffic. Oh well, this blog wasn’t exactly about to buy me a luxury yacht with Google’s cash anyway.