Recently Skippy asked, 'why do you blog?' I was commenting on that and it got kind of long, so I thought I'd record it here. The short answer is, I don't know, and I'm not sure I need to know. But since this is all about figuring out the answer, I guess I'll play along.
A good place to start with figuring out why I blog is probably to look at the content and see where that leads me, and the answer is that it's mostly personal - Laura and Aidan, my wife and best friend respectively seem to be two of the most used tags around here). There's some tech stuff in there (I have a less than totally obscure WP plugin that people seem to like)1. I rant in a fairly banal way about things that shit me (technical, social and political things in approximately equal measures). I also occasionally use it as a diary, and to post things that are only likely to be of interest to my close friends and family.
From time to time, I think about getting focused with my blog (or with another purpose built blog). Trying to really craft my desired online identity/reputation. I also from time to time think about the possibilities of monetising it. Building a real audience and focusing on SEO. Then I think about how much work all that would be and I decide I've got more interesting (and probably rewarding) things to devote my time to.
Having said all that, I think the real answer is simply that I love the internet and the possibilities it presents in all kinds of different ways. I love things like XFN, micro-formats, APIs and aggregation. I love programming (which came as kind of a surprise to me) and am passionate about things like web standards and elegance in all kinds of code.
This was originally a comment on Skippy's post, but since I usually turn any comment I'm going to make that's longer than a paragraph or so into a post/trackback, it's been put here as well. And that leaves me a nice segue into a post/comment on 'Why do you comment?' But I'm going to leave that for another day.