It’s now been eleven years (and six days) since I started blogging.
Since this is not that big of a milestone, I am not going to recap the history of how I got there; you can check out last year’s post for that. Instead, I’m just going to talk of developments in 2018, and plans for the Current Year.
Looking Back on 2018
Despite a lackluster mid November-mid January, during which a critical overload of RL commitments strangled my output, this has once again been a blockbuster year. Record amounts of output on my part were reflected in a near doubling of visitorship and pageviews and a tripling of commenting activity. Thank you all for making this possible.
I keep visitorship and pageview statistics going back to when I started blogging, and going by them, it is clear that this year my blog soared well beyond its previous highs in 2012-13.
Visitorship is now completely dominated by this website (>90%). That said, my Russian language blog akarlin.ru continues growing, despite being only very interminably updated and starting from a very low base.
Here are the monthly figures. The sharp drop at the end testifies to the importance of avoiding sharp drop-offs in activity.
It looks like I am also gaining on Steve, whose pageviews increased from 10 million to 11 million in the past three years. Russia Reaction is currently at 13% of iSteve’s pageviews and receives a third of its comment-words. Unfortunately, James Thompson – who I think is the only other person on this site who releases his blog performance data in regular yearly intervals – has seen a collapse in pageviews from 420,000 in 2017 to 240,000 this year. You can mostly thank the SJWs who have been harassing him this past year for that. I wish him the best on recovering and superseding his old numbers. Check out his recent demolition of Taleb’s nonsense on IQ.
Best Posts of 2018
In the past week, I took the opportunity to update my personal website akarlin.com. In particular, I added a curated archive of all of my best posts since I started blogging here: https://akarlin.com/archive/
(Apologies in advance, but I need to spell out the links to my personal webpage in full because the redirection script otherwise forces them onto the Unz Review).
Here are some that made the cut for 2018:
- The Road to World War III (2018): My most commented post ever.
- Sinotriumph 101 (2018)
- Colonize Space… With Nukes! (2018)
- Superpower Demographics (2018)
- Coffee Salon Demographics (2018)
- IQ in Time and Space (2018)
- The (Physical) Strength of Nations (2018)
- Cognitive Cliodynamics (2018)
- The Idiocy Of The Average – And Why It Matters (2018): Possibly my most visited post ever.
- Largest Survey of Russian IQ Yet (2018): See also the associated map of Russian patriotism.
- PEW Confirms “Soviet Freezer” Theory (2018)
- A Short History of the 20th Century (2018)
Here are my best Russia posts from this year:
- Russia’s Technological Backwardness (2018)
- Overview of Russian Airports & Aircraft Construction (2018)
- US Arrests Russia’s Foremost 2nd Amendment Activist (2018)
- The Ukraine Has Not Yet Perished (And Won’t Anytime Soon) (2018)
- Putin Needs To Sacrifice The Donbass To Survive. (Not Really). (2018)
- The Istanbul Patriarch Plays at Pope and Falls Under Anathema (2018)
- Remembering Slavyansk (2018)
- Centenary of the Bolshevik Usurpation (2018)
- Why I am Not Celebrating Victory Day (2018)
- The Yaroslavl Rebellion: 16 Days of Freedom (2018)
- General Vlasov, Soviet Patriot (2018)
And here are my key travel posts from this year:
Now on to:
Looking Forwards to 2019
I will start off with an extended organizational note. As per the above, not only have I finally created the curated archive – something I have long wanted to do – but I also made many other changes to my online ecosystem.
MODERATION. I have added a comments policy: https://akarlin.com/comments/ . As regular readers know, I am a very pro-free speech blogger. I only hide low quality comments (e.g. Gerard2’s profanity-ridden rants against AP, though I am tempted to start doing the same to the endless “khokhlosrach” between Mikhail and Mr. Hack), and I only delete comments that insult me without adding anything useful to the discussion, and I only ban people who either do nothing but insult me or who commit legitimately serious violations such as attempted doxings or legal threats. This policy will continue unchanged in 2019 with one exception: Higher quality comments will be expected on my (very occasional) serious longreads, which will henceforth be tagged “effortposts”. I will delete or hide low effort “shitposts” there.
NEWSLETTER. You can now sign up to The Russian Reaction mailing group.
Updates will be infrequent (no more than half a dozen times per year at most). I will only use it to announce the most important news or updates.
(Thanks for all the suggestions, but in the end, I went with MailChimp. I am probably too lowkey to be deplatformed anytime soon, and should that ever happen, setting up on another platform will not be difficult).
START HERE. I have majorly revised my Start Here page: https://akarlin.com/start/
This may be useful not just to people who are new to my work, and don’t know where to start, but also for existing readers who want a summary of what I do.
OTHER PAGES. Various other pages at akarlin.com have been tidied up:
- Reviews: https://akarlin.com/reviews/
- Travel: https://akarlin.com/travel/
- Links: https://akarlin.com/links/
- Quotes: https://akarlin.com/quotes/
I also plan to add a Glossary page (it currently exists at http://akarlin.com/glossary/ but has almost no definitions) in the near future to formally introduce terms largely exclusive to me in the Anglosphere, such as “svidomy” and “handshakeworthy”.
The front page at akarlin.com will now host updates (at least monthly) on the status of some of my most important projects, which brings me to…
Plans for 2019
BOOKS. This is my foremost priority. In order of priority, they are:
- Dark Equilibrium: Book length version of this essay. [Planning]
- Dark Lord of the Kremlin: A summary of and a capstone to my Russia watching career. [In progress: 30%]
- Frozen Embers: Sci-fi novel in which the Earth falls out of the Sun’s orbit. [Prospective]
- Apollo’s Ascent: Book length version of this essay. [Long-term]
While I know that I have ritualistically stated this at the beginning of every year, I do think that 2019 will be the year in which I finally churn something out.
I am planning to get Dark Equilibrium [provisional title] ready by the summer. It is, essentially, an expansion of A Short History of the Third Millennium.
While I really want to get my Russia book out of the way sooner or later, it seems to be terminally stuck at the 30% point and my enthusiasm for it is subject to sharp ups and downs. Let me on to a personal secret… much of my Russia-related output is driven by outrage over people being wrong on the Internet (yeah, pretty sad), which makes it hard to keep enthusiasm going on content that stretches into the 10,000’s of words. Whereas I find the futurism stuff genuinely interesting in its own right.
The other two books are very much prospective works, though there’s a chance I might finally take a stab at the sci-fi book during this year’s Nanowrimo, if I find the time. Apollo’s Ascent is a book length version of this essay. Realistically speaking, not going to happen until 2021 at the earliest, since it’s a massive undertaking and I frankly don’t have the necessary background to adequately realize it yet.
We hope to issue a “Kholmogorov Reader” based on the translations we have been doing these past couple of years. There is currently enough material for half a book. This will largely depend on whether the main translator, Fluctuarius Argenteus, finds time to fill out the rest. Unfortunately, there is no oligarch sponsoring the project; it’s something that we (mostly him) do on our time time.
My PhD (which I am getting paid to do) is at the intersection of psychometrics and demographics. It strikes me that a Russian version of The Bell Curve is needed. Obviously, this is also very speculative and long-term.
VIDEO. The ROGPR podcast (Alt Right politics and video gaming for Russians), with which I was directly involved, has been discontinued. The main players in it have since largely gone their own way. I intermittently do podcasts with various Russian bloggers, though that will not interest my Anglo readers too much.
I might someday start doing video monologues in English or Russian, like RAMZPAUL or Molyneux. Though not this year, and for the same reason as in 2018: “Spreading oneself too thin is a mistake, and one that I have made more times than I should have.”
REVIEWS. I want to do a lot more book reviews this year.
Main problem with book reviews is that they’re very ineffective from an effort expended/impact perspective, but OTOH, one also internalizes their arguments a lot better when one is forced to summarize in a review.
Books I want to review this year:
- Rindermann, Heiner – Cognitive Capitalism. Committed to it.
- Dutton, Edward – At Our Wits’ End. Committed to it.
- McMeekin, Sean – The Russian Revolution: A New History
- Caplan, Bryan – The Case against Education
- Fischer, David Hackett – Albion’s Seed
- Schrad, Mark – Vodka Politics. I actually told him I’d do it when it was published… better late than never!
- Ilyin, Ivan – Our Tasks
- Hanson, Robin – The Age of Em
- Stager, Curt – Deep Future: The Next 100,000 Years of Life on Earth
- Bostrom, Nick – Superintelligence
- Murray, Charles – Coming Apart
- Jones, Garett – Hive Mind
- Stephenson, Neal – Seveneves
- List, Friedrich – The National System of Political Economy
Video games I want to review this year:
- Fallout: New Vegas
- The Deus Ex series in general
- Mount & Blade: Warband
TRAVEL. Apart from being fun, readers seem to appreciate my travel writings, so I should certainly continue with that. In the pipeline are the following:
- Russian cities: Bryansk, Novgorod
- A comprehensive travel guide to Moscow
Otherwise, I hope to finally visit China and perhaps the Visegrad area (probably Czechia-Vienna) this year. If I get lucky, I’ll finally do the LDNR and tick off the Mirotvorec achievement.
DONATIONS. Obviously, the main problem and constraint with travel writing is that one can’t really do it from a sofa (well, you can, but someone will eventually notice inconsistencies and call you out on it).
You can help with that in the following ways: https://akarlin.com/donations/
- Sponsor me on Patreon
- Bitcoin: 17tDufZUEK3DvQh3rY75F3xtVgxj4TzdtB
- Paypal donation
- Yandex Money via Yasobe (for ruble accounts)
On to plans again…
ARTICLES. “Serious” articles:
- RMAX Theory
- S Factor of Russia
- Mathematics of Apollo’s Ascent
POSTS. Here are some posts that I have the notes for, in a few cases have actually partially or fully written, and which I plan to publish in the coming months:
- Transform the post Rurik’s Seed: Maps of Russia into a page on my website with a large collection of such maps.
- Dark Equilibrium series:
- Breeders’ Revenge. On the precise mechanisms by which fertility is going to increase under technological stagnation. Done.
- What Is the Maximum Population Earth Can Support? Done.
- The Beer Yeast Solution to the Fermi Paradox. (Humor)
- Why the World of Warhammer 40K is the Future. (Humor)
- The Great Bifurcation: The Coming Cold War between the Blue Empire and the Sinosphere. Instead of the yearly predictions, I am soon going to release a decade forecast.
- Noosphere: Survey of World Scientific Output. See Twitter summary.
- Belarus 101
- A Short History of Literacy series in:
- Ancient Greece and Rome
- American Pravda: Kiev Snipergate. Fifth anniversary coming up… seems like the appropriate time.
- Why Ukraine Lost Crimea. Another post that needs to be done to clear up some myths.
- History post about Ivan Grozny
- Effective Altruism, Carnivorism, and Animal IQ
- Rooted Cosmopolitanism
- The 5 Types of Russian Nationalist
- Article about Dugin (who is not a nationalist, and who is far more influential on Reddit than in Russia)
- Some more Soviet Myths type posts, e.g. about living standards
- The Death Toll of Soviet Communism. Ron Unz suggested this to me ages ago, as well as one on the Suvorov Hypothesis
- Who Will be President After Putin?
- Will There Be US Civil War II?
Not going to reveal details about them other than the titles. Speculation is more fun.