But the main reason to move then was to have a more flexible platform to share images, data and researches on that group of parasitoid wasps. Thus the Microgastrinae Wasps of the World was born, based on the Scratchpads architecture.
At the time it seemed to me that the new website was much better vehicle than a mere blog to accomplish the goals I had. And indeed it was, although I must say that it was not as user-friendly as I had anticipated. [Or perhaps is because I have become a dinosaur and do not really have the knowledge and/or capabilities to deal with the cyberscape...? Whatever].
Fast forward six years and I am pleased to pass that website to a much younger, enthusiastic and energetic colleague: Mostafa Ghafouri Moghaddam. He will now be leading the efforts to keep that website up and running. My good friend Darren and I will continue working with Mostafa, and we will continue to be part of the site. But it will be now mostly Mostafa's show. Here is wishing him the best in that endeavour and hoping that he will take that site to more useful and important roles.
I am always happy to pass the torch to younger colleagues. But it was also the desire to explore new avenues in my research life. I had just recently published a long paper in ZooKeys that took the best of my last 4+ working years: a 1,089 pages world checklist of Microgastrinae. This paper can hopefully provide a basis for further studies on the group for the next several years, and I thought that I could focus on some other things now that this burden was off my shouders.
So, I have been looking at old unfinished projects, new species to describe, material to sort that had been postponed for a long time... And I found myself opening this blog again, after six years without looking at it.
Time has passed, new technologies have emerged and consolidated. Social media is all the rage these days... Does anyone writes or reads blogs anymore? I just do not know!
But perhaps I will come back here to add more posts. It will not interfere with the website that Mostafa is working with now, because I would only use this blog to post things about caterpillars and their braconid parasitoids. The "Microgastrinae Wasps of the World" site is mainly devoted to provide images and data on taxonomy of microgastrines, a more serious and focused effort. Whereas this blog can be more informal and less serious... I think.
To be honest, I am not sure if I will really come back to write more posts here. As a (mild) rehearsal, I just wrote this post, And will leave it here. And then I will see how it feels. Perhaps I come back. Or perhaps not. Who knows (and, one must also add: who cares?).
Thus, I cannot claim, as Bilbo Baggings did, that I was "There and Back Again".
Instead, and for now, I can only write "There and Back, Again?"