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:: w.bloggar :: version 4.0 released

Wb-Tools

PC users might be interested in the latest release of :: w.bloggar :: which has just been released.

:: w.bloggar :: acts as an interface between you and your blog, acting as a post and template editor. It allows offline editing (of course you have to connect eventually to update your blog).

The latest version (4.0) supports MovableType advanced post options and new tools like WordPress, SquareSpace, B2evolution etc. Get a full list of the update changes at their What’s New page.

Looks like a good system – but unfortunately I’ll never know as I’m a Mac man and they have not and will not ever release a version for me. Instead I use ecto which supports both Mac and PC users. If w.blogger is anything like ecto I’m sure its a very useful tool!

I’d be interested to hear from w.blogger users – how do you find the new version? – write us a short review of the interface and I’ll gladly publish it here or link to it on your blog.

Word Press – Web Application of the Year

ars tecnica has just announced its awards for 2004 and has named WordPress as Web application of the year.

Let’s face it. Blogs are in fashion, and why not? Vanity knows no bounds, and there are some people who actually do something productive with theirs. From the influence of blogs on the coverage of the US presidential elections to every random teenager who has problems with their partner/parent/teacher/cat, blogs are out there allowing your most intimate feelings to be shared with random people at wifi hotspots. WordPress is the most prominent rising star of weblog software, completely free and with a large and active community. Styles, plugins and hacks are readily available, with problems such as comment spamming being addressed far more rapidly than competing applications.



I have to agree – WP is moving forward very quickly and is a highly useable application for blogging. I’m looking forward to seeing how it develops in 2005.

Keyword Identification Tool – NicheBOT

Nichebot
Thinking of starting a new blog but you don’t know what keywords to target? NicheBot might be a tool worth checking out. Its a very useful tool that helps you to identify keywords that:

1. are being searched for

2. don’t have too many other sites competing for the same keyword

To use it simply enter in a keyword that you’re considering targeting – I’ll choose ‘MP3 Player’ for our example as its something I’m kind of interested in. After a short wait they’ll come back to you with a result page like this which has some very useful information (well it gets me going!) – the results are made up of the following pieces of information which they glean from Google and Word Tracker

[Read more...]

Find Your Future Google PageRank

So we know Google are doing a page rank update – on some data centers the results are not showing yet. Are you impatient and want to know what your blog’s page rank will be? You might find this future page rank predictor tool useful.

Future PageRank from SEO tools looks at a variety of data centers around the globe and checks to see if there is any discrepancies.

For example – this blog is currently showing a page rank of 3 on Google.com – but after checking the tool it seems that a page rank of 6 is on the way which would be a nice thing.

Dpbsts

It seems most of my blogs have had an increase in page rank which is a nice feeling (one even seems headed for a page rank of 7 – up from 6) – however the backlink update of the last two weeks was not so positive and SERPs and traffic have suffered terribly (see attached graph which is an example of the decrease in traffic over the past few weeks on the blog with the page rank of 7).

So whilst the updates don’t seem to be final I’m left in a strange place – page rank is on the improve but traffic levels remain at an abysmal level.

And still we wait – assured by more experienced blog/webmaster friends that time will tell and that things will improve.

In the mean time the Future Page Rank tool will be a handy one.

[Read more...]

Translating Blogs

The Multi Lingual Blog (Blogos) has an interesting post examinging Translation in the Blogosphere.

‘Now that millions of individuals around the world are being empowered, if that’s the right expression, by blog software to file reports from sites that the news media cannot always reach, or expose and share their personal lives in interesting new ways, or engage in intense discussion about issues of moment, far from the exclusive institutions of the nation state, the language barrier suddenly looms up like a wall of ice from the sea of words. How can we free the meanings encoded in those alien tongues?’

This is another of those ‘gap areas’ where I see opportunity for some enterprising person or group to provide some tools that would be snapped up by thousands of bloggers around the world who want to expand the reach of their sites (whether they be purely hobby blogs or professional ones).

I’ve previously experimented with free translation software like Babel Fish or Google’s Translation Tools – but I’ve never been completely satisfied with them. I’ve recently seen a number of bloggers who have people translate their articles by word on a voluntary or paid basis – but this is a slow and arduous task.

The other end of the spectrum is how to monetize your translated pages. Many advertising programs will not allow you to put your ads on non english sites. Adsense now has a number of languages available for its ads, but it can get quite tricky to set them all up if you have multiple versions of the one page.

I’m keen to hear how others have tackled the issue of translating their blogs? Have you seen good models of it? What tools work for you? What don’t? Feel free to leave your comments and suggestions below – share the knowledge so we can all improve our work.

Message Cast – Live Message Alerts

I’m testing Live Message Alerts on this blog at the moment which enables you the reader to receive an alert every time I post new content. You can choose to be alerted either on you msn messenger, via email and/or to your mobile device. You have to have an MSN passport to be included in the program. The system uses my RSS feed and is currently in Beta. Let me know how it works for you if you sign up for it. You can do so via this button.

LiveMessage Alerts

New Google Feature: Sponsored Links

I just stumbled across a new (?) feature on Google – Google Sponsored Links which allows you to enter a term and then see what ads Google has in their stock pile.

The initial page that you go to looks like you’ve come to an error page but enter in a term in the search bar and you’ll get a list of ads that they have. For example here are ads on the topic of Blog Money and here are some for Digital Cameras

The results do seems to vary depending upon your location (I get a lot of Aussie ads). This would be a useful tool for you if you’re deciding on a topic for a blog and you want to run Adsense Ads. Check your keywords/blog topic on this tool and you’ll see if there are sufficient ads to make it worth your time. If your keywords don’t produce any ads it might be worth changing your approach or finding another income stream as it will be hard to get ads served to your blog and therefore difficult to extract any money from Adsense.

ecto blog: Special christmas discount!

ecto is offering a spacial Christmas discount on its amazing blogging software. I use ecto for MacOS 10.3 (windows version is also available) and absolutely LOVE it – it totally revolutionized my blogging experience when I stumbled upon it.

‘With ecto you can write and manage entries for your weblog(s). The advantage over using your weblog’s control panel is that you can compose entries offline and use the extra features ecto offers, such as spellcheck, creating links, attachments, and much more. ecto is designed to make blogging much more easier and yet give the users as much power as possible to manage their weblogs.’

Get a list ectos features at:

- Mac version

- Windows version

The discount is valid between 20 – 26 December and is for a limited time only – get 30% off here.

PubSub LinkRanks

PubSub LinkRanks are a useful tool that help to keep track of how different domains are being linked to by the blogosphere. They define them as:

‘LinkRanks are a measure of how many pages link to each particular site, with more weight given to fresher links and to links from a wider variety of pages.’

They help you keep track of what is hot in terms of topics/sites but are also useful for tracking your own domain.

For example they will keep track of how your domain is going over a month with a little graph. For example my livingroom.org.au domain has been pretty up and down this last month in terms of inward links and has ranked anywhere from 580th to 460th in the sites being tracked. Also helpful is their list of sites linking up to your domain.

Get a full description of how LinkRanks works here.