WordPress 1.5 first impressions

Michael gives his first impressions of WordPress 1.5.

TypePad and Blogger Compared

CNET has a comparative review of the TypePad and Blogger blog platforms. I think they made the right decision with their ratings.

‘We looked at the two top blogging services. Best known, and free, is Google Blogger. But you get what you pay for: Blogger is a basic blogging service that won’t overpower beginners with too many options or choices. For a small monthly fee, however, Six Apart TypePad provides the services we’d like to see offered within Blogger, such as mixed-media templates, built-in photo uploading, and guest accounts. Ironically, Blogger makes it much easier to host your blogs on your own domain; TypePad allows it but also requires a little extra work between you and your ISP.’

WordPress 1.5 Review

The Blog Herald writes a good review of Word Press 1.5 for those thinking of upgrading or swapping over.

‘WP 1.5 builds on 1.2, which in itself was very good, so I’ve got no complaints. The static pages and spam handling abilities are definite positives, and the templating system is particularly useful for new bloggers or bloggers who’d rather not play with script too much. Would I recommend changing from 1.2 to 1.5, yes, but if you’re happy running 1.2 I wouldn’t rush, the new version isn’t an earth shattering change and I’ll personally only be rolling over my other blogs and those I’ve designed for a few others over the coming months, but I’ll add that I’ve got adequate spam protection on the others. If you’re running WordPress 1.2 and are having big problems with spam, make the move quickly. It won’t stop spam altogether, but the built in tools certainly go along way.’

Easy Bake Weblogs E-book Review

I’ve been chatting to Andy from Easy Bake Weblogs (affiliate link) for the past week or so via Skype and am really enjoying chatting with another problogger who knows his stuff. Andy comes at his blogging from a slightly different direction to me – he’s an experienced blogger who is making his blogging related income a little less directly than I do from blogs. Where my income is largely through advertising on the actual blogs that I run Andy has a variety of other income streams including design work, tele-seminars and an e-book.

Today I was chatting to Andy about his ebook (its information page is here) and asked what its focus of – and two seconds later he’d generously sent me a copy for my thoughts and review. I’m really glad that he did because I have really enjoyed reading it over the past hour or so.

I’ll say up front that I’ve never been a huge fan of e-books – maybe its because I had a bad experience with the first one I ever got, or maybe I’m just tight, but my opinion of them has never been great. I’ve heard too many stories of people forking over substantial amounts of money only to get a 30 page document with large typeset with information that you could find anywhere on the net for free.

So you can imagine my suspicion as I sat down in my local cafe this morning to take a look at the Easy Bake Weblogs E-book.

I’m happy to report that my suspicions were off the mark in this case. Let me share how I found it:

[Read more…]

Tabbed Browsing for Bloggers

Arieanna has a good post on why she loves Firefox as a blogger. As I was reading it – especially this following section on tabbed browsing – I found myself agreeing with her whole heartedly – although for me you just need to substitute the word ‘Firefox’ with ‘Safari’ throughout her article. Here’s what she says about tabbed browsing:

‘I use Bloglines to read most of my news. My preferred method of reading is just to open up a folder all at once (I organize my subscriptions into folders so I can prioritize my reading). Bloglines then delivers all new posts for all blogs in that folder in a linear fashion. So, I scroll down the page reading post titles that appeal to me. If there is something I want to read more fully and/or perhaps blog on, I will middle click or Control+click to open that post in a new TAB. I have set my preferences so that new tabs open “in the background,” so to speak. Let me explain this: I tell Firefox to open the tab, but it does so by just opening a new tab behind the one I am currently reading. Non disruptive. I can keep reading without any popup or any clutter in my taskbar.

Why do I like this? Well, I have two stages for reading my blog subscriptions. Approaching 200 blog subscriptions, it is impossible to read everything, nor does everything interest me.

Stage 1: look at titles. If appealing, open tab. Keep scanning down for more.

Stage 2: Go through each tab and read the posts.

Another great advantage of tabbed browsing is the ability to read a webpage fully from top to bottom, while also opening up links you think would be interesting to read more about. No having to press the back button a ton of times. Each link is a possibility for a new tab. Indeed, I think I’ve come close to having 50 open at once. Try that with IE windows. No thanks.’

Read more at Firefox for blog reading

10 DIY Blog platforms you may not have visited

Duncan over at the Blog Herald has a good post introducing readers to 10 DIY Blog platforms you may not have visited.

The list he compiles is filled with some interesting blogging tools that you might want to check out if you’re looking to start a new blog.

Yahoo! 360 Reviewed

Steve at Micro Persuasion reviews Yahoo! 360 – it looks like an interesting tool but if Steve is right it probably wont be too useful for ProBloggers and Business Bloggers. Steve writes:

‘As compelling as Yahoo! 360 is for newbies, it has virtually zero application as a professional/business blogging tool. It’s far too simple. You can’t easily turn features on or off and it lacks trackbacks and customization. I guess we can’t expect it do everything that the big platforms do.’

Thoughts on The Future of WordPress and MovableType

Jeremy Zawodny writes on the Future of WordPress and MovableType and writes:

WordPress will come to be the de-facto choice in the world of self-hosted personal weblogs and low-end webhosting “value added” package. MovableType will be the blogware of choice in the corporate blogging world, both for internal weblogs and those that face the outside world.’

I can’t say I’d made that distinction – I use both on very similar blogs and find they each have their own advantages. I’m probably leaning more towards WP at the moment – but could go either way.

Comparing Blogger to WordPress

Balay ni Bambit has a great comparative analysis of Blogger vs WordPress for those of your who are still at the stage of choosing a back end client for your blogging. She ends up coming down on the side of WordPress (as I think most serious bloggers would – I admit I’m biassed) but points out some of the issues you’ll have if you are making the switch. You might also like to check out her post titled Blogger to WordPress in 13 Not-so-Easy steps if you’re contemplating making the switch.