Has my blog changed my (professional) life? Well, in a certain way yes! Let me try to explain it ...
Before I started blogging, I was already into all the technical stuff about .NET programming ... but more superficially. I read already a lot about different topics (books, blogs, magazines, ...) and I knew the basics pretty well, but I never took the time to explore it to the bone. Nowadays when I'm reading something interesting about a specific topic or dealing with a weird problem, I really try to dig deep into it and try to understand it completely. Because of this, I feel that I gained more insight in certain areas of .NET programming. Sometimes this digging results in a blogpost. One year of blogging also means that a part of my experience of that year is written down and I can always reach it and look things up when I need it.
Blogging remains personal. I mean that I'm completely in control about time and content of posting. When I don't feel like it or when I'm busy with something else, you won't see me posting because I have to. There's no deadline! I do this because I believe it's better for me and if I can share some knowledge with others in that way ... great! I really do appreciate all the positive feedback I've received about my blog and I'll try to keep up the good work, but I can't make that promise! I'm also subscribed to other blogs what makes me dependent on the people behind those blogs. Being subscribed to blogs is like subscribing to a service without a contract : you never know exactly what to expect. If you like it, you keep your subscription; otherwise you unsubscribe! No obligations. It's that simple!
If you consider to start your own blog, you must be aware that you will have to free a lot of time to write your own stuff and this won't be easy after a while. You will have to find your own rhythm. Blogging is definitely a learning process! What do you choose : quality or quantity?
I really don't believe that blogging is a waste of time. You get noticed (visibility) and it's good for your market value if you don't write too much BS.
I wish you all the best in 2006 and stay tuned!