October 22, 2011
Is Jerry Pournelle the First Blogger?

In 2007 Cnet news ran an article that asked who the very first blogger might be.  The article sited some high-profile names, but I believe Cnet missed the true great-grandfather of all bloggers—Jerry Pournelle.

Jerry Pournelle is a prolific writer.  He remains active in the arenas of editorial, science, science-fiction, and technical writing.  To my knowledge, Jerry is also the first blogger.

In terms of computer sophistication, the 1980s were the equivalent of steam-driven engines and whale-oil lamps.  In that decade, Pournelle wrote a series of articles entitled  The View From Chaos Manor for the now defunct Byte magazine.  Chaos Manor became essential reading for power-users and IT professionals alike.  It was during this time that Jerry also began writing an online “day book” on BIX (or the Byte Information Exchange).  BIX pre-dates the world-wide web, and Pournelle’s “day book” would be called a blog today.  (At the time that he wrote it, the term “blog” did not exist.)

Pournelle maintains his “day book” even today.  Cnet probably missed Jerry’s milestone “day book” because Jerry doesn’t like to call his blog by that name; he thinks the term “blog” is ugly.  Still, by any name his online musings are the earliest blog that I know of.  I hope that this post will lead you to read Pournelle at his Chaos Manor site, as well as in hard-copy.

  1. renrutsworld said: Great addition to the historical record!
  2. imall4frogs posted this
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