27 May 2012, 17:29
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Gabriela Jack (3 posts)

Hi,

I would like to know your opinion about this. I’m a career changer going from Mechanical Engineering to programming. Years ago, I used to write a blog about a very specific CAD product. The blog became very popular in the community, with links to it on search engines and other people’s blogs and websites, but it never really helped my career as I was seen as “just a blogger” and the blog became pretty much marketing for the CAD and not so much about my own value as a user of the CAD. I stopped writting some time before I decided to pursue a different career. The blog is still there and I still own the domain name, which is my own name. I haven’t updated it in over a year, but it’s still in search engines and other people’s links.

I want to blog again, and hopefully this time use the blog to help develop my new career as a programmer, but I can’t decide what to do about the old blog and domain name. Should I keep that domain name because it’s my name and simply replace the old content with new content without an explanation? Should I just close that blog, ditch the domain name, and start with a new one, even though it’s not my name?

What could help me the most?

Thanks in advance!

27 May 2012, 17:58
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Andy Lester (18 posts)

I think blogging is a great way to help show future employers that you know what you’re doing in the area about which you blog.

Consider the hiring manager who has two candidates who look good on paper. Both candidates say that they know about a given technology, but Candidate B has a blog that he’s updated over the past year where he writes about that technology. That blog is evidence of the knowledge that he has that isn’t just words in an interview.

If you can write a blog post every two weeks that tells a story about something interesting that you did at your job, after a year you’ll have fifty posts that provide evidence that you know what you’re talking about. What to blog about? Anything that’s a story that you might tell someone over lunch is a great start.

Maybe you had trouble with installing the Solr text indexing engine. I had problems last week, so I wrote a blog post documenting my problems and what I did. Now I have a blog post that helps the next person who Googles for the error messages I got, and I have proof of my experience in doing what I say I’ve done.

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