Blogging Platform

Just read a post about a guy trying to decide upon a blogging platform. He passed over Blogger due to a lack of control. Ummm okay. He tried out Wordpress but gave that up too. He ended up choosing Jekyll.

Generating a blog post for this dude under Jekyll amounts to redeploying his site. He needed to enter a bunch of commands at the shell script to do this. He patted himself on the back for sticking the commands in a script. There is just one problem. He needs to be at the command promopt to issue the commands. No blogging from a phone or through email anymore. Oh well.

I am all down for putting power in the hands of the blogging. However easy of blogging is tops for me. I should not have to pull teeth just to get out a blog post. No thanks Jekyll. Blogger is fine for me.

Blog Comments

I was reading the blog over at Betable. They were talking about great music from video games. I recalled some of the sounds of old from games I used to play. It was strange that nobody was commenting on this post. So I decide to add my 2 cents and chime in.

After entering my info, I the submit button. At first I thought that perhaps I did not click the button successfully. There was no feedback from the browser that it was waiting for the click to process. Then I saw that the Submit button changed its text to Submitting. That was 10 minutes ago.

Yep. This thing is hung. Left me with a bad taste in my mouth. I think this was the first time I visited the Betable blog. It was probably be my last as well.

New Bloggers

It is always nice to see new bloggers entering the blogosphere. Today I checked out a tutorial by Chase Gale. His layout is nice looking. I especially like how he tags the code to distinguish it and make it easier to read.

I recall back when I started blogging. I thought I was ready to take over the world. Blogging has helped me establish my voice online. Now I am not a Dot Net developer. So I am not going to be following the details of Chase's example. I can, however, enjoy a good new post and a newcomer to the blog game.

Service Unavailable

These days I find that Blogger is almost unusable. I get the same error many times when I try to sign in or add images to my blog. What the heck is going on here? Things were not always this bad. Blogger used to be tight. Now I can barely get a post up.

I wonder if this has anything to do with the new Google Blogs transition. I also hear that Blogger (or Google Blogs) is getting an upgrade. As for me, I would prefer the old version if it would be stable. These problems are in addition to issues I have with formatting when images are added. Sheesh.

I realize that Blogger is a free service. It is starting to feel like I am getting what I paid for this. Damn. I might have to search out some alternatives. Maybe a paid blogging service would guarantee better results. Then again, there are other free options like WordPress or TypePad. I will let you know what I find out.

Google Blogs

Pretty soon Google will be retiring the Blogger brand. Instead it will be called Google Blogs. WTF? Blogger is what we have been using all along. I know Google likes to put its name on stuff. But come on.

It looks like Google is doing the same thing for Picasa. The name is changing to match Google. The only thing Google has bought that is still safe is YouTube. At least YouTube will still be YouTube. For now.

All this name changing seems to be taking a back seat to the new Google +1 business. This is Google's answering to social networking. It is said to be a Twitter killer. The service seems more like FaceBook to me. For now I am ignoring the thing. But Google +1 is all over the news.

Product Blog

I want to put up a blog to gain eyeballs to a product web site I need to put up. It seems the simplest thing would be to use Blogger. Now I do not want to run off the blogspot domain. Blogger lets you host the blog anywhere. Here is the question. Is Blogger the right choice?

One of the reasons I am contemplating jumping to another content management system is that I have been having problems with Blogger. The thing seems to mess up the formatting of my post when I put a picture in there. For now my work around is to work in Edit Html mode. However that is not the best for me. I am not sure if Blogger does not support my browser, or if it just a bug, or what. I do know this is a major inconvenience.

I have also browsed around to see what other people are doing. Many sitemasters recommend Wordpress. I have never used the thing. But I am tying out new things. Maybe I should give it a test run. Either way I am going to be making my decision soon. Right after I get a domain, I will want to drive traffic there immediatly. What better way to do that than to start up and regularly write posts to a blog?

Writing Handbook

I just went though a university handbook on writing. Use the active voice in your sentences. Do not use nouns that are verbs plus "-ion" at the end. Cut down on the number of words.

Short verbs are best. Skip the word "of". Instead use apostrophe plus "s". Remove clauses such as it is, it was, and there is. Vagueness is poor. That is, do not use area or degree or factor or situation.

Skip the big words. Get rid of multiple words string together. I can use these rules myself. I might have to work very hard when composing my prose.

Line Feed Failure

Recently I have found a weird behavior in Blogger. I press the Enter key when I am typing text in new posts to separate paragraphs. However once my blog post gets published, the carriage return and line feeds disappear. The result is that all my text is in one big blob on my blog.

Now I know a little HTML. So I go back and manually edit my posts. I click on the Edit HTML tab. Then I put in some HTML to force hard breaks between my paragraphs. However I should not have to do all this. Come on Blogger? What are you doing?

The Blogroll

I have not had a lot of time to talk about blogging recently. That's in part because I have been learning the JavaScript language. This might be a temporary fad. I really see myself getting deeper into writing code using Java this year.

If I do get proficient at Java, I think I might have a shot at getting a job with IBM Corporation. They got some interesting enterprise level projects that I have a great interest in. I also have the domain knowledge to back it up.

With the rise of FaceBook, some think blogging may become extinct. I have not caught the FaceBook buzz. For me, blogging is the best way of mass distributing information in an easy way. I plan to continue blogging in the future.

Bing Controversy

Google has accused Microsoft of using Google search results for Bing. They say that Bing is cheating. Google got a response from Microsoft that was vague. They then declared this response meant that Microsoft was admitting that they were stealing Google search results for Bing. All of this info was released on the Search Engine Land web site.

Microsoft quickly came out firing. They state that "we do not copy Google's results." They use about a thousand signals for their search algorithm. They did admit that their original email to Google was not entirely clear. They also call Googles antics a stunt. I am sure as Bing becomes more popular, there will be more to this war.

Google Staffing

Google has reported that they hired a whopping 4500 people this past year. And they anticipate 2011 to be an even bigger hiring year. Their previous record was 2007 when they hired 6000 people.

There are a lot of big new projects going on at Google. They are working on a web operating system. They are doing work on instant search. And there is even a project to have a computer drive a car.

All of this is very interesting to me. I had thought I heard rumors that Google actually laid off employees last year. Let's hope that they are actually hiring people. The economy needs it.

Blogger Basics

I just finished skimming through one of those dummies guides to using Blogger. Strangely enough, many of the ideas in the book were more geared towards Search Engine Optimization (SEO). I do want to point out some of the Blogger specific information I learned.

Blogger might make blogging simple. However the Blogger platform is not for beginners. You can do some more advanced stuff with it if you like. Here is something I do not practice that much myself. You should fill in your profile as it is very important to your readers. Put the best info at the top of your profile.

By now you should know that Blogger provides you with templates to guide how your blog will look. However you may opt to use third party templates. That will ensure you blog does not look like everybody else's. Finally you should get in the habit of writing controversial pieces. It will cause a stir and that is good for your blog.