February 25, 2006

Blogs offer a meaningful way to utilize the power of information and communication technologies for project-based and problem-

Blogs offer a meaningful way to utilize the power of information and communication technologies for project-based and problem-
Having been away from this EVO course on blogging for a while, I went back and looked at the syllabus for Week 5 (see link above). In it I found a link to web usability-guru Jakob Nielsen's article on blog usability, but I was most impressed with the EVO blog syllabus writer who edited this down to a short list of 10 points, which I repost here for your (actually MY) edification and perusal, and being unable to not stick my nose in, have added my 2 pennies' worth:
  1. Include author biographies to give your site credibility
    I once listened to a radio show which included a confrontation between 2 famous political bloggers, Andrew Sullivan and Atrios. Sullivan was castigating Atrios for hiding behind anonymity, saying this cast a poor light on his credibility. But I completely disagree, as well as sympathizing with Atrios' reasons for not coming out and saying who he is (he lives in a small town and has no wish for his blogging activities and freedoms to have any effect on his job or family environments). And I don't feel that his anonymity has any bearing on the value of what he writes.

  2. Include author photo to enhance credibility

  3. Assure posting titles are clear—not just for human readers but also for search engines and newsfeeds.
    Good point, hadn't thought of that. It makes sense, for search purposes, then, to keep postings to single topics, like a paragraph.

  4. Tell readers where a link will take them rather than just writing “click here”.
    I usually do this only for PDF files, because I prefer the clean look rather than complete URLs littering the page, but perhaps a little description might not go amiss. (There was a time when I favoured the minimalist approach, as in "for more info on this, click here, here, here or here.")

  5. Highlight the better posts in your blog and make links to them yourself

  6. Categorize posts by subject as an alternative to categorizing only by date.
    Another good idea. Trouble is, blogger doesn't have a categorization system, and I'm too lazy to make one myself.

  7. Publish on a regular basis so readers can anticipate posts.
    Rendered more or less irrelevant by RSS, I would think.</LI>
  8. Be consistent in your range of content—the more focused your content, the more focused your readers will be

  9. Think about how your blog will look to a hiring manager in 10 years.
    Hm! Thanks! How about showing my blog now and asking for a raise?

  10. Consider paying for a personal domain name if you are serious about blogging. If your domain name is owned by a weblog service they they own your destiny on the internet.
    Can't argue with that, especially when even pros like Ewan Macintosh can erase his entire blog with a couple of clicks.

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