Websites as Living Organisms

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One of my favorite things about online publishing is that what’s posted online isn’t written in stone. A major drawback of traditional publishing is that once something is in print, it’s out there forever, immutable without the release of another edition. One common example of this drawback with traditional printing is how school textbooks must be printed every year to update them.

With blogs and websites, you can choose to go back and edit or change anything you want. This is why I’m constantly going back and revising old pieces, whether it’s necessary or not. I want my writing to be organic and evolving all of the time. But, there’s more to it than just keeping my writing skills sharp and my writing up to date.

It occurs to me that websites are like living organisms. They are constantly growing, adapting, and evolving over time. Just like how we as humans change and mature with time, websites too, change in their appearance, functionality, and content.

A website is like a living being, requiring constant care and attention so it can stay relevant and engaging. It must adapt to the changing tech landscape and ever-evolving demands of its users. It’s surprising to me that more website designers and developers don’t refer to their creations as “living organisms.” As a content creator, I can’t really see it any other way.

Just like living organisms, websites also have a lifespan. A website, once fresh and relevant, can quickly become stale and outdated. A website’s creative team must keep it relevant and vibrant over time. Otherwise, over the course of a few years, it may no longer meet the needs of its audience and ultimately fail to achieve its intended purpose.

Part of this leads to website creators keeping up with the latest trends and developments in web design and technology. They must constantly monitor the needs of their users and adjust their website accordingly. Constant updates to the design, functionality, and content of their websites keeps them constantly in motion; users like it when there is consistent progress, whether consciously or not.

Just as our bodies need nourishment with food and exercise, websites need regular maintenance. They also require optimization to ensure it runs smoothly and efficiently, much as we must constantly improve upon our own routines and thought processes. This includes monitoring and optimizing website load times, ensuring security measures are up to date, and regularly backing up data.

By seeing websites as living organisms, we can better understand the importance of maintaining and optimizing them over time to ensure their success. It also means we can’t just set and forget content once we’ve posted it online. While I’ll always appreciate how books are a product of their time, my intimate involvement with online content has taught me never to stand pat with my creations. They can always grow along with me.

~ Amelia Desertsong

Amelia Desertsong is a former content marketing specialist turned essayist and creative nonfiction author. She writes articles on many niche hobbies and obscure curiosities, pretty much whatever tickles her fancy.
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