Tuesday, March 10, 2015

Blog Sites
BLOG: (according to the dictionary) a web site that contains an online personal journal with reflections, comments, and often hyperlinks provided by the writer. 

Or as one blogger put it: the thing your friend does that you know you could do better. A hobby for the new century, one way to use your freedom of speech, and your cat’s one shot at fame.

Some of this is from my own experience and the rest it stuff I’ve heard from friends and read.

Here are a couple How To’s I found interesting:
http://tinyurl.com/lb5t3op  -  page on FB
If you want to visit any of the blog sites in the list below, just click on the name.

WordPress.com is a free blog-hosting site. The general idea here is less maintenance for you, but less control of the blog. Get a .wordpress domain name like “dearblogger.wordpress.com” or pay to use your own domain name. WordPress.com sees 100,000 posts published each day. Write posts, try a free theme, set up social media buttons and learn blogging at WordPress.com.

Blogger is Google’s free blog-hosting site. More popular at the turn of the millennium, Blogger still offers a great service but the designs are a bit elementary. Login and publish your first post for free with only a Gmail account.

Tumblr is new compared to WordPress and a few others. They have received lots of sign-ups from users wanting a totally refreshing take on blogging, and have grown ever since. Tumblr was recently bought by Yahoo, who has interesting plans for the whole blog advertising thing. I just hope it doesn’t inherit some of Yahell’s issues.

Slightly more business focused. Get online quickly with a free trial, setup a cool design and start attracting clients – that’s the motto.

If you need a guide on how to use Google Plus click on the link in the middle of this sentence. Like most everything associated with Google, Google+ has a sense of humor. Fun features like the badge make getting followers easier. Google+ brings you instant community + audience = two things any blogger wants more of.

Alternative Communities

Hubpages started as an article network, the kind of place where you were rewarded for publishing lots of articles on any one topic like cooking, travel or home-improvement. Today, it boasts millions of informative articles and guides. However, a by-product of mass publishing is slightly lesser quality.

Joomla is an advanced CMS (content management system) used by developers to publish some of the websites we visit each day. Written in PHP (originally PHP stood for Personal Home Page, it now stands for PHP:Hypertext Preprocessor; it’s a server-side scripting language), it uses many of the same structures as a WordPress site does. Joomla is one of the web’s oldest and savviest places to run a blog or website, but it takes a bit more skill.

Recommended for: Blogging, journaling, writing a diary
Founded: April 15th, 1999
Founder: Brad Fitzpatrick
Total users: 39.6 million accounts, 1.7 million active accounts
Pros: friend others to read their entries and leave comments, avatars, user info pages, to-do lists
Cons: moved design to Russia in 2009, basic plan users see advertisements
Premium features: express lane for quicker load times, call from your phone to a LiveJoural number and post voice recording to your journal

Weebly has been around for a while (2006) and hosts 15 million websites. One reason for that is the simplicity. Drag and drop feature is foolproof, but there is less control for the user.

New Releases
Recommended for: On-the-go bloggers, note-taking
Founded: 2013
Founder: Evernote
Total users: 20,000
Pros: Supports popular comment plugin Disqus, lighter feel, easy to use.
Cons: Less customization
Costs: Free

Recommended for: Social media integrated blogging
Founded: 2013
Founder: Facebook Developers
Total users: Well, 1.1 billion already on Facebook…
Pros: Simple to share images, links and quotes – useful if you’ve got a large, Facebook-centric audience already.
Cons: Limited design and that blue Facebook-y feel we all want to get away from every now and then.
Costs: Free
Not much different from a Facebook page.

Pros: Generally bent on community, top navigation bar like Blogger, has a word-matching system that matches similar posts and will recommend users to your posts the moment they sign-up, private discussions, one click subscription system
Cons: Premium service that allows for more image hosting.
Costs: Free with premium service offered

Pros: Free themes, multi-author blogging, social media widgets, video
Cons: Less customization
Premium features: Your own domain name, advertising network

Resembles WordPress
Cons: Unclear timeframe of new software releases
I’ve heard of this one, but don’t know anyone who uses it or anything about it.

I visited quite a few of the sites above, and found that most of them do offer instructions for setting up your blog. It’s just that some are simpler to follow than others. I found both Blogger and Blogspot to pretty easy to use.

Here are some examples of BATB blogs to draw inspiration from: 
If anyone has a question please feel free to ask. I may not have all the answers, but I will try to find them. J

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