Sharing interesting thoughts is kind of cool, I guess, but it doesn't accomplish much. Lots of people have interesting thoughts (and even more people think they have interesting thoughts).
What I look for in blogs now is that they provide services with their posts. They should fill a gap in the literature or create a new resource that didn't exist before.
Some examples of posts I feel provide a service:
- Luke Muehlhauser's Decision Theory FAQ
- Brian Tomasik's estimates of wild animal populations
- Carl Shulman's analysis of the risks of nuclear warfare
On my own blog, I would include:
- Non-Profit Media Organization Profiles
- Media Advocacy Optimization Tips
- Daniel Gilbert's Stumbling on Happiness
- All my posts that summarize academic articles into ordinary language.
- Plus some others.
I don't think 100% of my posts need to provide services but I definitely want to change up the ratio. I want my posts to inspire the reaction, "Wow, I couldn't have written this." People rarely get that reaction from reading an interesting thought.
[Note: This post is arguably contradictory because it is more of an Interesting Thought than it is a Service but I think this is a valuable exception because it introduces new terminology for me to use in future posts. The same idea was behind Seeming to Care and Playing a Long Term Game.]