L’écriture est un art difficile. C’est pourquoi j’ai installé un Wiki local, à la maison : Instiki. Une joie.
Bloggers, this seems to be an emerging tradition, do some navel-gazing once in a while. Why do I blog? What do I blog? Where does blogging lead me? Who reads me? I have tried to avoid this, which I find difficult because I tend to do a lot of this sort of introspection. Still, I find it annoying to read (at least my own ruminations — others’ can hold my interest longer). So this entry is supposed to be an exception.
One of the reason I started this blog was to learn how to write and, in addition, to find a slightly formalized — by virtue of having to construct sentences and paragraphs — outlet for the random thoughts that wander into and around in my mind. I hesitate to call it therapeutic, but the aspect of giving substance to the unformed thought-matter that, in its incohate state causes (figurative) headaches more ofthen than providing intellectual satisfaction.
Still, the blog is sometimes looming a bit big. Some people, those who write, in some form, for a living, and those who just enjoy low inhibitions, might laugh at my griping about the fact that there’s still a big title to be found, sentences structured according to the grammar rules of one of two foreign languages, vocabulary choices made, paragraphs to be constructed, some sort of train of thought to be captured and brought to a not-too abrupt stop.
Which this post won’t have, at least not in full, since its point is less to describe the rigidities and rustiness of the inner workings of my mind — well, that, too — but to chronicle that I’ve found a new tool to ease the writing process. A Wiki, as a local install on my home computer. It’s very pleasant for taking notes, taking down things of interest and organizing them, branching off in all and any direction just by using the appropriate WikiWords. To keep things simple, I use Instiki — the name seems to come from instant and not from institution –, which only requires Ruby 1.8.1 or higher to be installed on one’s computer. No web server, no database is used. Very pleasant Wiki! It installed in a jiffy on my Linux box, and seems to run on everything else as well. (If you want to install it on a Debian box like I did, check that all necessary Ruby modules are present — see the FAQ on the Instiki site.)