Variable, Level 01—Taking a look at our first year

I’m usually not one for anniversary posts, but this was one I couldn’t let pass. I helped found Variable after all, and having the site up and running for a year now is an achievement. This is especially considering what we’ve been able to do in this time, as well as what we have planned for the future.

Starting Variable last year was a pretty unique experience for me. For the past decade or so, I’ve mostly written for sites based abroad. Even my previous attempts at launching my own site were also geared towards western audiences.

But with Variable, I was now running a site geared towards a local audience, towards Filipinos. It was here that I realized how much of an opportunity we had with the site. Our country is currently racing to catch up with the rest of the world when it comes to technology. People are still only just barely aware of how much technology permeates their lives and could use a site that can further educate them.

Looking back at the year that was

The timing Variable‘s launch was quite fortuitous. We were in the middle of a global pandemic, after all—one that helped make people more reliant on technology.

As such, we hit the ground running, with one of our first big interview pieces focusing on professionals who’ve had to adapt to using technology to get work done during the pandemic.

For me, this piece really set the tone for the kinds of “tech” stories we’d like to do on the site. And we eventually did with our Women’s Month pieces focusing on women entrepreneurs.

More recently, we ran a piece on how technology has affected journalism in the Philippines. This was quite exciting as it allowed us deeper insight into how journalists have adapted to the new digital landscape.

That said, we also didn’t shy away from covering the usual kinds of tech stories, especially when it came to gaming. The launch of the new video game console was a big story last year. This was especially true for the PlayStation 5, as the country has always been a Sony bulwark.

With this, we ran multiple pieces on the PS5, from the madcap dash for people to pre-order the console, to its surprisingly subdued launch.

Other tech stories we ran included an explainer on “GameStonks.” Here, we looked at why people from the r/WallStreetBets subreddit started investing in U.S. game retailer GameStop. More importantly, we asked the question of whether local retail investors could do something similar here.

Last, but not least, we also got to indulge in one of my passions: esports.

I’ve covered esports for foreign sites before, but Variable gave me the space to shine a light on the local scene. This resulted in a two-part look at the grassroots fighting game scene.

What’s next for Variable?

Moving into our second year, we have even more things planned for Variable. One of these is our upcoming podcast: the EXP Show.

We’ve wanted to do a podcast for some time now, and we’ve actually been working on getting it ready for the past few months. Expect it to launch soon.

The EXP Show will allow us another space to explore technology and gaming, as well as how they affect the Filipino. At the same time, it’ll also allow listeners more direct access to some of the people involved in technology and gaming in the Philippines via live interviews.

Beyond that, sadly that’s all I can talk about for now. We’re still keeping our other plans close to our chest. That said, we can promise that it is going to be an exciting year for Variable and our readers, so be sure to keep locked on to the site for more of what have in store.

If you like reading our content, why not show your appreciation by treating us to a cup of coffee? (or two, if you’re feeling generous)

Franz Co

managing editor | addicted to RGB | plays too many fighting games

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