Probably most novice bloggers soon start looking at statistics of visits to their blog. WordPress.com has a nice set of analyses easily available to any blogger. I’ve worked on analyzing web server logs before so this didn’t surprise me. But what did surprise me, a bit, that it is possible to impute what search terms people are using to click through to my posts. Naturally after making a few posts I checked a few search engines and my posts never came up anywhere near the top, so I’m surprised how many clickthrus I do get from search engines.
But the really surprising part of that is that the single largest “topic” (various sets of terms) that have led people to this blog is about bread! Out of 157 posts I’ve made exactly one about bread, yet this is my biggest source of search engine hits (followed closely by Curiosity). Needless to say my various rants on contemporary issues have very few clickthrus, which is not surprising given the gigantic volume of noise about these issues.
Now I am far from any authority on bread, or even a very accomplished amateur baker. For much of my life I wanted to try baking bread (there is some so fundamental about this food, one of the oldest processed foods known to humanity, plus the simplicity of it, only four mandatory ingredients). But despite collecting numerous books and lots of equipment I was always intimidated from trying.
Then finally I did, at first carefully planning a set of “experiments”, recording lots of results in OneNote, and achieving some success. Finally I used one of the simpler processes, Jim Fahey’s No-Knead process and was amazed by: a) how good the result was with relatively little effort and essentially no skill, and, b) how much you could alter the recipe and process and still get good (after almost identical) results, thus indicating that perhaps some of the complexity is irrelevant. In any activity one starts getting some immediate positive feedback is terrific to keeping up interest so I have pursued more baking, but at the same time usually just fall back on my now tried-and-true process. Thank you, Jim
I also know, since I searched, there are many blogs and other sites with tons of information on making bread. That’s what surprises me that somehow my one tiny post in a vast sea of information is getting found. And also, probably how disappointed people are finding my blog instead of one of the much better ones.
So as one of my future efforts, I think I’ll spend some time finding those far better blogs and revising my original post to include useful links to people who actually know something about bread.