Blogging is obviously on the rise, and has been for some time now, but the way we blog is starting to change.
Most of us are used to firing up a web browser, going to the admin section of our sites and stamping out a post. Some platforms even allow you to pick your WYSIWYG (What You See Is What You Get) editor and most platforms make it easy to add pictures and embed video. What’s next?
I have been toying with the next step in blogging tools and though none are perfect or complete, they are a start.
Twitter – Twitter is a “what are you doing now” kind of service. For blogs they offer a badge that you can post on your site and your updates are pulled automatically. You have to post your thoughts via Twitter and they show up on a sidebar widget on your site.
Tumblr – Again, this is a quick post kind of service. I call it a supplement to my main blog. The great thing about Tumblr is that they provide a dynamic link that you drop onto your browser toolbar and when you find something you want to add to your “Tumblog”, you click the link, edit the details, submit and your done.
The main flaw with both of these services is that they are supplements to my site, and I have found that secondary tools fall by the wayside fairly quickly. Don’t get me wrong, they are swell, but the swelling goes down quickly.
My first thought when using Tumblr is there must be a way to turn those Tumblr posts into WordPress posts. Tumblr gives me the quick post method, which is awesome, and then I want to have WordPress pull the RSS feed and turn it into individual posts. Well, there is such a tool, WP-O-Matic, but the AUTOMATIC bit doesn’t work with my hosting package. I was able run manual fetch commands, but the value wasn’t worth the hassle.
Once I scratched Tumblr + WP-O-Matic off the list, I decided to search for a direct way to quickly post to my blog. The first thought was to lose the admin accessed authoring. So I found w.bloggar.
W.Bloggar – w.bloggar is a well built “desktop publishing” blog tool. You install w.bloggar on your computer and are then able to configure it to publish directly to your blog. One of the recent updates even lets you add pictures without setting up FTP access in the software, instead it uses APIs to get in. (I use a self hosted install of WordPress, not all platforms support the feature) I actually created a post about w.bloggar and stated that it would be perfect for people that don’t have internet access 24/7. They could build posts offline, when thoughts are fresh, then publish the posts when connected. I am sure some will find it handy just because they can build and edit locally instead of in a web browser.
So w.bloggar fits a certain need, but it doesn’t clear the “right now” posting that is certainly to come. The next level up is QuickPost.
QuickPost – QuickPost is the closest tool that I have been able to find that allows me to post directly from the web page I am viewing to my blog. This tool is also built with a dynamic link on you browser toolbar, but instead of a secondary site, it goes right to my blog. This is achieved with a WordPress plugin. This IS the future of blogging. I will not be surprised to find that in a couple of revisions, WordPress will be including the same kind of functionality, built right in. This is an extremely powerful way to blog and though QuickPost is not without it’s flaws, it is at the bleeding edge of blogging.
One last thing, while I wrote this post, I was waiting to see if a new YouTube toy managed to do it’s thing……… Nope! Not yet. Well, we’ll see if it works. YouTube has developed the ability to post YouTube videos on your blog directly from the viewing page. You setup a couple of details in You Tube, once configured, you click “Share” and use the form to post it to your blog. The two test vids have not yet shown up, but I am very hopeful about this one. I am especially excited because one of the downfalls with the current release of Quick Post is that it messes with my page when I post videos.
So there it is, my experience, to date, with the bleeding edge of blogging. I can’t wait to stumble upon the next good idea in easy access blogging.