Monday, July 6, 2009

What did I get myself into?

My wife took the kids to see the grandparents this summer so I have a lot of free time on my hands for once. I thought I would go to the gym again, catch up on a bunch of movies I've been meaning to see, go out with some friends, yada yada yada. But instead my life has been consumed by the creation of this blog and website I used to wonder why anybody would want a blog. What could make his life so interesting that he thinks other people want to read about it? But now this blog and site have taken over all my time. I'm constantly thinking about what I want to put into these sites next.

I've wanted to start an anesthesia directory like for a long time. I figure that I've seen a lot of crappy anesthesia related web sites and I can do much better. Boy, is this hard work. I am a complete newbie at this. At first I had to get a domain name and find a web host (don't even think I knew what those terms meant before this whole episode). Unfortunately I'm not as orginal as and I'm too late to get an obvious name like After going through dozens of domain name suggestions from Yahoo, I thought I found a great one. Great Z' Get it? Anesthesia? Z's? I jumped on it when I thought of it and found it was available. Now I'm wondering what was I thinking? I should have done a better background check. Who knew that Graetz is such a common name? I certainly have never met anyone named Graetz. Plus is hard to pronounce and type. Those of you who know how to type can understand the difficulty of typing zs. However you can type greatzs with one hand only. So now I'm stuck with this name and will have to do the best with it that I can. After all the work I put into it I don't want to change it. I hope it grows on me, and you, over time.

After a few weeks of this I've now gone knee deep into the world of Adsense, Adword, HTML, XML, JaveScript, Sitemap, sitemap (there is a difference), external links, internal links, back links, PageRank, etc... Bought one of the Dummies books to help me understand all this. Looking at Google's help forums is intimidating. They can be quite arrogant and seem to assume that everyone knows how to insert a robot.txt file into your root directory. Can somebody explain this to me in English please?

There have been moments of triumph. The day Google found my site was pure elation. I've finally got my own property on the web. Then last week Yahoo actually ranked my site for "anesthesia education". I'm number 47, ahead of about 11,600,000 other people! We're moving on up (moving on up). To the sky! Unfortunately Bing hasn't found me yet. Poor Microsoft. When will they ever give up on this search thing.

I've read that every new site gets placed in a Google sandbox, where it sits for a few months until Google figures out it is a legit site. I'm hoping that's why it hasn't come back around to see all the great improvements I've made since it first found my site. In a way this is good because it gives me time to work on it before anybody (hello, anybody here?) sees it. I've also seen a lot of doctor sites not get updated for months or even years. I guess they just keep paying their webhosts every year with their credit cards and not realize it. When the wife and kids get home, I hope I can still reserve some time for this. It is kind of fun. I used to love working on computers in high school and college. Had the original IBM PC with two 5 1/4" floppy drives, upgraded memory to 512K and installed a 10 mb hard drive into one of its slots. Add color monitor and color printer and the whole thing cost my dad $5000. That was real money back then. You could buy a car for that much money then. When I think back, I'm amazed my dad gave in to my whining and pleading. No wonder my brother says I was so spoiled. Now I don't know the difference between MySpace and FaceBook. Twitter vs. RSS.

So I guess in a way this is kind of reliving my childhood. I'm having fun on the computer again, like my old geek self. I'm creating original work and not just doing the same intubate, extubate, intubate, extubate every day. I feel like I've found a purpose this summer, not just vegging in front of the TV like usual. I sincerely hope I can continue this enthusiasm when the family gets back.

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