It seems that the majority of blog traffic (at least in blogs I read) is time-based. It is personal-diary entry posts, references to current events, predictions about future events, bug reports, and other things that either become obsolete or for which it’s important to know the date. For such posts it makes sense to have the date be part of the Permalink URL, and in the normal course of events such posts will tend not to be updated after release.
Another type of blog traffic is posts that have ongoing reference value which will (ideally) be actively maintained to keep them current. For such posts it makes sense to have no date stamp in the Permalink – for example if I update a post about installing SE Linux on Etch once Lenny is released (a significant update) I don’t want people ignoring it when it comes up in search engines (or worse having search engines score it down) because the URL indicates that it was written some time before the release of Etch.
WordPress supports Pages as separate entities to Posts, and the names of Pages are direct links under the root of the WordPress installation. However there is no RSS feed for Pages (AFAIK – I may have missed something) and the WordPress themes often treat Pages differently (which may not be what you want for timeless posts). Also it is not unreasonable to have Pages and timeless posts.
I’m thinking of creating a separate WordPress installation for posts that I intend to manage for long periods of time with updates (such as documenting some aspects of software I have written). The management options for a blog server program provide significant benefits over editing HTML files. The other option would be to use a different CMS (a blog server being a sub-category of a CMS) to store such things.
What I want is a clear way of presenting the data with minimal effort from me (an advantage of WordPress for this is that I have already invested a significant amount of effort in learning how it works) and editing from remote sites (the offline blog editing tools that are just coming out is a positive point for using a blog server – particularly as I could use the same editor for blog posts and documents).
Any suggestions as to how to do this?
Then of course there’s the issue of how to syndicate this. For my document blog (for want of a better term) I am thinking of updating the time-stamp on a post every time I make a significant change. If you subscribe to the document feed than that would be because you want to receive new copies of the documents as they are edited. The other option would be to not change the time-stamp and then include the feed along with my regular blog feed (making two feeds be served as one is not a technical challenge). If I was to update the time stamps then I would have to write posts announcing the release of new documents.
Does anyone know of someone who writes essays or howto documents in a similar manner to Rick Moen  or Paul Graham  who also does daily blog posts? I’d like to see some examples of how others have solved these problems (if there are any).