Showing posts with label blog. Show all posts
Showing posts with label blog. Show all posts

Thursday, January 1, 2009

Best of Moonlight Blog 2008

As we move into 2009 I thought it might be fun to look back quickly on the year that was with a top 20 post of the most popular posts published on Moonlight Blog this year (according to page views on Google Analytics). I hope you enjoy this trip back through the year of 2008 at Moonlight Blog.
  • Youtube Unblocked in China - 7,803 views

  • SourceForge Blocked In China - 7,720 views

  • Top Ten Best Wordpress Plugins - 5,043 views

  • Top Ten Best PlayStation Games - 4,812 views

  • Top Ten Best PS2 Games - 2,822 views

  • Top Ten Best Firefox Extensions - 2,645 views

  • WordPress Mod Rewrite Make Subdirectory 404 Error - 2,431 views

  • Top Ten WordPress SEO Tips - 2,011 views

  • Google Translation Gadget - 1,899 views

  • GoDaddy Blocked in China - 1,434 views

  • WordPress Excerpt Seo Tips - 1,388 views

  • The Most Popular RSS Reader In China - 1,235 views

  • Install WordPress MU On IIS With Url Rewrite - 1,225 views

  • WordPress MU Optimization Script - 1,087 views

  • Micro-blogging: Chinese Twitter Clone Site - 999 views

  • SourceForge Unblocked in China - 909 views

  • Boycott China Product If You Really Love China - 898 views

  • YouTube Blocked in China Again - 841 views

  • Custom WordPress Database Error Page - 838 views

  • DB2ASP - Free Access Database to ASP Converter - 812 views

  • All in all it was a fairly busy but very satisfying year of blogging here at Moonlight Blog. Thanks to the many readers who have contributed either with guest posts, comments, emails and tip offs. I’m looking forward to yet another great year in 2009.

    Wednesday, December 10, 2008

    Wordpress 2.7 Released

    Wordpress 2.7 has been officially released and is available for download. There are many new features added in 2.7 and the first thing you will notice is the re-designed user interface and Dashboard.

    Version 2.7 should be a major upgrade into the WordPress software. Here are some of the changes that it brings:

    • new interface to make it easier to perform the admin tasks

    • customization options on the admin screens

    • the ability to reply to comments from the dashboard

    • embed support for comments threading

    • drag and drop support on some sections


    The most exciting stuff is the automatic upgrade. From now when new versions get released all you will have to do is one click, and the software will take care of the rest. I am sure this will make WordPress a much more secure software, too.

    Monday, December 1, 2008

    Pownce is Shutting Down

    Microblogging service Pownce, is closing down on December 15. As of today, Pownce will no longer be accepting new users or new pro accounts. The Pownce team has joined SixApart.

    Pownce have built an export tool so users can save the content. Users can find the export tool at Settings > Export. Please export content by December 15, 2008, as the site will not be accessible after this date.

    Sunday, November 23, 2008

    Z-Blog URL Redirect Security Affected Spam Attacks

    Z-Blog system contain a security issue that allows spam attack to Wikipedia by using url redirect.

    The design of Z-Blog anti-spam encrypts the URL before redirect it. The name of the redirected file is c_urlredirect.asp. With the parameter of this page Z-Blog kann redirect to various pages. Sorrowfully the used encryption is very simple. One just need to put the odd characters together. With this methode blackhat SEO manipulates redirects from other Z-Blog websites to call its own website. Thus even if the original address is listed on the blacklist by Wikipedia, the manipulated redirect would still work and be used as spam.

    The solution for this problem is not easy. The most simple way is to delete c_urlredirect.asp. But this method would also prevent the blogger himself make redirects.

    Source . thanks for Wing translation

    Thursday, October 30, 2008

    Is Blog Dead in China ?

    In the past year, there is a continuing discussion in the Chinese blogosphere on whether blog culture is dying down. Moreover, recently bokee.com and blogchina.com, the two earliest BSPs founded by Fang dong-xing in China, are at business crisis. Fang is looking for investing to transform the websites into multi-media community platform.

    What we see is: BSP and services related with blogs are slowly disappearing, blog has passed its golden days and walked into a dark future. The main reason is because the services around blogs cannot make a profit.

    Why can't they make a profit? The content quality of blog is better than SNS, Twitter and Digg, their traffics are high. They should be able to get income from Ads. However, at present, blogger's income is too narrowed. Basically, they depends on Google AdSense. Which means their profit is affected by Google.

    When Google entered the scene, it developed a huge number of blogging tools, such as google reader, feedburner, blogsearch, etc… which destroyed other BSPs dream for profit while google has a monopoly status in the market.

    Blog is more open and individualized, its content quality is relative higher. SNS is more closed, especially towards search engine. It contrasts with blog's openness and affects information dissemination. A good article is very difficult to get disseminated via SNS. Now most of the SNS in China are coping the facebook, which is a dead end. The best SNS is Tencent's QQ, but you can't find any similarity between QQ and facebook. The funny thing is Tencent never claimed itself to be a SNS.

    Thanks globalvoicesonline translation

    Friday, May 23, 2008

    Free Online Translation Tools

    Google Translate - Google's free online language translation service instantly translate text and web pages. This translator supports: English, Arabic, Bulgarian, Chinese (Simplified), Chinese (Traditional), Croatian, Czech, Danish, Dutch, Finnish, French, German, Greek, Hindi, Italian, Korean, Japanese, Norwegian, Polish, Romanian, Russian, Spanish, Swedish, Portuguese.

    Windows Live Translator - Microsoft Windows Live Translator is a free online language translation service for text and web pages. This translator supports more than 25 translation languages.

    Babelfish - Yahoo Babel Fish provides free online text and web page language translation tools. You can use this site to translate words, phrases, or entire web sites into 19 pairs of languages, including to and from English, Chinese, French, German, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Portuguese, and Spanish.

    Systran - Systran is a leader in providing language translation software products and solutions for the desktop, enterprise and Internet. With Systran products or solutions you can instantly translate and understand foreign language content into 52 language pairs.

    Monday, April 28, 2008

    Disable Directory Listings in WordPress

    By default when accessing any directory which does not contain an index file, a directory listing will be shown displaying a list of the files in that folder. Web servers can be configured to automatically display the listings of the contents of a web site's file directory if no index file (i.e. index.html or index.php) is present. This can expose files and information to visitors.

    Simply adding a blank/ 0 byte text file named "index.html" will prevent this directory list from being displayed, however another way to disable directory listing is by adding the following line to the .htaccess file in your public_html folder of your web hosting account :

    Options -Indexes

    That’s it, with this line in place, folders which do not contain index files will no longer show the default directory list.

    Saturday, April 26, 2008

    Top Ten Best Wordpress Plugins

    WordPress is a simple to use blogging tool. The beauty of WordPress is that it can become so much more with the simple installation of plugins. With a few clicks, WordPress can become a full fledged Content Management System (CMS). Here is a rundown on the top 10 best plugins every blogger should have installed.

    Here is a great list that I whipped together of some of the most useful and most popular Wordpress plugins which every blogger should have installed. Enjoy the list.

    Akismet - Simply the best Spam protection you can get for handling comments on your blog. Akismet checks your comments against the Akismet web service to see if they are spam or not, also checks the trackbacks for spam.

    WP Super Cache - An extremely efficient WordPress page caching system to make your site much faster and responsive. It works by caching Worpress pages and storing them in a static file for serving future requests.

    WP-PostViews - Enables you to display how many times a post/page had been viewed. It will not count registered member views, but that can be changed easily.

    WP-PageNavi - A WordPress Plugin that adds more advanced page navigation to WordPress. It does this by adding page number links to your different pages. Using this plugin your readers will be able to jump from the first to the last page and other pages of your blog very easily.

    Simple Tags - A plugin does everything related with tagging. With this plugin you can generates a list of related posts based on the text of blog entry. The tags can be used to search your blog and are picked up by blog search engines like Technorati and can bring in new users.

    All in One SEO Pack - Automatic Search Engine Optimization (SEO) out of the box for your wordpress blog, everything you need to get your site optimized for search engines.

    Google XML Sitemaps - Simple tool for auto generating sitemaps every time you make an update to your site. This plugin is the best tool to tell Google how it should crawl your blog and where to find everything you want found.

    Wordpress Thread Comment - This Plugin is an enhancement for Wordpress's comment function. It enables users to reply on a exist comment, and the discussion will be displayed threaded or nested.

    FeedBurner Feedsmith - Forwards all feed traffic to Feedburner while creating a randomized feed for Feedburner to pull from.

    Wordpress Database Backup - Automated or on-demand backup solution for your wordpress database. Don't leave home without it!

    Wednesday, February 27, 2008

    Top Ten WordPress SEO Tips

    There is a lot of amazing SEO power built into WordPress. Unfortunately it does not all come by default, and you might not know what is best when it comes to templates and options. Follow these simple rules for search engine optimization and your blog will rank much higher in Search Engines.

    1. Optimize WordPress Permalinks

    The most search-engine friendly permalink MUST includes the post title (%postname%) in the link,having keywords in your URL is an absolute must, In your WP admin panel, click on the "Options" tab, then the "Permalinks" sub-tab, and choose the option just below the "Default" permalink option. My suggest permalink structure is /%year%/%monthnum%/%postname%/ or /%year%/%monthnum%/%postname%.html .

    2. Optimize WordPress Post Titles

    The post title is the most important part of the blog post for many reasons. From your reader's perspective, a descriptive and compelling title helps them decide if your post is worth reading or not. From an SEO perspective, think about the keywords or phrases people might type into a search box to find your post, and use those words or phrases in your post title.

    3. Optimize WordPress Page Titles

    According to most SEO experts, the page title tag is one of the most important tags on your page. In most WP themes, you'll find the page title tag in the Header Template, and the default version ususally looks very poor SEO. I suggest you to use a WordPress plugin so call "All in One SEO Pack" to fix that problem.

    4. Optimize WordPress robots.txt

    The robots.txt file is used to instruct search engine robots about what pages on your website should be crawled and consequently indexed. Most websites have files and folders that are not relevant for search engines (like images or admin files) therefore creating a robots.txt file can actually improve your website indexation. Here is an SEO optimized WordPress robots.txt file.

    User-agent: *
    Disallow: /wp-
    Disallow: /feed/
    Disallow: /comments/feed
    Disallow: /trackback/

    5. Use Google Sitemaps Plugin

    Google Sitemaps is an easy way for you to submit all your URLs to the Google index and get detailed reports about the visibility of your pages on Google. WordPress user Arne Brachold has made the sitemap creation and submission process fairly simple with his Google Sitemap plugin. This plugin will create a sitemap for you and submit it to Google.

    6. Use Wordpress Anti-SPAM Plugin

    Akismet is the best automated spam killer that actually gets better as it learns from the whole community marking new spam comments as spam.

    7. Use Related Posts

    Amaury BALMER's Simple Tags plugin is a perfect tool to manage perfeclty your WP 2.3 tags, which can show related posts on your post and rss feed. Not only does it enhance your blog's usability, but it also helps create a dense link structure throughout your site, which makes it easier for the search engine spiders to find and index older blog posts.

    8. Use Ping services

    Use the Update service function, to inform tracking services that you have updated your weblog. By default, Wordpress pings rpc.pingomatic.com, which is good (if you don’t want to change this, you don’t have to).

    9. Make your content searchable

    Make sure your navigation bar is present on all pages of your blog. Your previous posts or atleast the popular ones should be linked to all pages so they get spidered easily.

    10. Update your blog frequently

    Update your blog frequently using all the rules mentioned above and your blog will surely get top rankings in a short time.

    If you have further SEO tips for WordPress blogs, I’d love to hear about them in the comments.

    Monday, February 25, 2008

    Micro-blogging: Chinese Twitter Clone Site

    Twitter is a social network micro-blogging services. The Twitter Clones (micro-blogging services) and it looks like one of the Chinese Twitters are gaining popularity quickly. Here is the most popular Twitter-clone sites in China what I known.

    FanFou - FanFou is the biggest Twitter-like site in China. It seems FanFou copied almost everything of Twitter, you can use FanFou to update "what are you doing" in less than 140 characters, it supports updating and receiving notification via Gtalk, MSN, QQ, mobile phone and web, you can follow the updates of your friends, and turn on/off the notification of your friends. It already has a wordpress plugin, maxthon plug and other 3rd party add ons. It also has two Twittervision-like mashups that put Tweets on the 3D globe and a 2D map of China. Xing Wang is Founder and Chief Executive Officer of FanFou.

    JiWai.de - JiWai.de is the first Chinese brother of twitter: an online service that enables user to broadcast short messages to your friends or "followers." It also lets you specify which JiWai.de users you want to follow so you can read their messages in one place. Just like twitter, Jiwai supports updating through sms and gtalk. Updating from mobile phones onto jiwai.de, however, compared with Twitter, saves considerable money for Chinese users who want to use twitter-like stuff. To meet the demand of more Chinese users, Jiwai.de also supports updating from some other IMs, including MSN, skype, and QQ. Zhuohuan Li is Founder and Chief Executive Officer of JiWai.de.

    TaoTao - Tencent QQ is the most popular IM in China. While Tencent has realized the value of micro-blogging, they launched a stand-alone service called Taotao. Not like FanFou, TaoTao only support updating from QQ and Web. It have no widget support. Since Tencent has the most extensive im user base, and the characteristics of this kind of micro-blogging service also match with profile of QQ's users.

    Other Micro-blogging Site in China:

    zuosa - http://zuosa.com
    ilaodao - http://ilaodao.cn
    komoo - http://komoo.cn
    byuu - http://byuu.com
    wulog - http://wulog.com
    fish - http://fish.sh
    laigula - http://laigula.com

    Monday, December 31, 2007

    Best of Moonlight Blog 2007

    As we move into 2008 I thought it might be fun to look back quickly on the year that was with a top 20 post of the most popular posts published on Moonlight Blog this year (according to page views on Google Analytics). I hope you enjoy this trip back through the year of 2007 at Moonlight Blog.
  • Wordpress Plugin: Chinese PinYin Slug - 2,467 views

  • Survival For Standalone Blogs - 1,682 views

  • China Internet Censorship Goes Crazy - 1,682 views

  • The Secret Of Internet Censorship In China - 1,461 views

  • FeedBurner Blocked By China - 1,276 views

  • FeedBurner Is Completely Blocked In China - 1,201 views

  • Google Answers Censorship In China - 1,082 views

  • About This Blog - 1,041 views

  • Baidu Hijacking Google, Yahoo, Microsoft In China - 1,019 views

  • Google Launches Chinese Blog Search - 1,014 views

  • YouTube Blocked In China - 986 views

  • WordPress MU AdSense Plugin - 944 views

  • WordPress Plugin: Post2Mail, Send Post to Email - 693 views

  • How To Visit Google BlogSpot In China - 670 views

  • WordPress Plugin: Yearly Blog Stats - 625 views

  • Wordpress Plugin: Keyword Filter - 615 views

  • WordPress Plugin: MySQL Server Crash Monitor - 552 views

  • YouTube, Have a Merry Halloween - 540 views

  • WordPress Plugin: WP-PostViews JavaScript Edition - 526 views

  • About - 520 views 

  • All in all it was a fairly busy but very satisfying year of blogging here at Moonlight Blog. Thanks to the many readers who have contributed either with guest posts, comments, emails and tip offs. I'm looking forward to yet another great year in 2008.

    Tuesday, August 21, 2007

    Google Launches Chinese Blog Search

    Today, Google released a Chinese version of Google Blog Search, the URL is blogsearch.google.cn . The IP address of "Chinese Blog Search" is in Bei Jing. Now Chinese users can use Google blog search services in simplified Chinese language.

    According to Google Chinese Blog, the Chinese version of Google Blog Search can track most of Chinese blog service providers,including Sina blog, Sohu blog, Tencent blog, 163.com blog, Baidu space, and other blog networks.

    Meanwhile, Google blog search is also support most standalone blogs, such as WordPress, MovableType, Google Blogger blog.

    The Chinese blog search is self-censoring, when I try to search "Tiananmen Square" in blogsearch.google.cn, I get no result. Google is not just translate BlogSearch's interface into Chinese language.

    Tuesday, August 14, 2007

    Survival For Standalone Blogs

    This is my responded to Zousuper's discussion on standalone blog's  survival(Thanks for danwei's translation). Later Zousuper's blog is blocked by Chinese government, but Zousuper is not render submissive, he set up a new host and blogging again. Here is the post:

    The necessary conditions for setting up a blog on a separate domain in China - whether or not it is illegal, whether or not it requires registration - is currently a hotly debated issue. From the look of current policy, it seems that all standalone websites that have interactive information have to be registered.

    There are issues of location here. If the server is overseas, then theoretically speaking registration is not necessary, but there is no way to guarantee that the server's IP will be accessible. Rose Luqiu's 1510 Blogs is a typical example. When a large proportion of visitors are from the mainland, then under normal circumstances a mainland server will be chosen. This is when we arrive the question of the blog's legality.

    Here I'll summarize the steps and conditions for legally setting up a blog on a standalone domain; this should be basically the same in all major cities across the country.

    Website registration is not a simple question. MII registration is just a basic registration, suitable for non-forum websites that do not have interactive information. If you think that MII registration will solve everything, then you are very wrong. Of course, you could close the comments section to your blog and voluntarily choose not to disseminate "harmful information"; in that case the MII registration would be enough. If your website allows leaving messages and exchanging information, and its traffic is low, you may be able to simply get by. In general, for normal small websites, MII registration is enough.

    If your website traffic is relatively large, particularly if it is highly interactive, like a forum or a blog, then you'll face the appearance of so-called "harmful information." Normally, when you discover "harmful information," someone will be tasked with notifying the webmaster to delete it; it becomes a problem when it occurs frequently.

    Strictly speaking, individuals are not permitted to provide BBS services on the Internet (interactive online services in which users provide information for release, including message boards, electronic whiteboards, e-forums, online chat services, and guestbooks) without formally registering or passing review by state communication administrators. To providing interactive forum and guestbook services, you must set up "technological measures for network security," in addition to registering with the PSB's Internet Supervision Center. This means a system for review, control, and deletion of information, as well as associated "computer security personnel."

    Usually, registering with the PSB Internet Supervision Center is pretty complicated and drawn-out. The registration is vastly different from MII's: it is very strict. If your website supports BBS, forums, guestbook, or chat services, then you must provide the following materials:

    1. A copy of the computer security personnel certificate;

    2. Registered Internet user network security form;

    3. Providers of Internet services for news, publishing, education, health, pharmaceuticals, and medical equipment must be approved by the appropriate government agencies in accordance with laws and regulations, and must present the government approval documents at the time of registration.


    The computer security personnel certificate is typically obtained by paying 660 yuan to be trained and tested. That means that if you want to write a blog, you must first pass the "security worker" exam. The registration form basically requires writing out your name, ID#, home address, mobile phone number, and place of work, so that if there are any problems you can be arrested on the spot. If you do not provide this information, then your registration may not pass.

    After you've registered, you then face the work of looking out for and cleaning up "harmful information" - this is the responsibility of the "computer security personnel." Because the appearance of "harmful information" on a forum or blog is ultimately the responsibility of the webmaster, the PSB will carry out punishment against the webmaster according to the volume of "harmful information" that is circulated. Here you'll run into the issue of standards for punishment. Current punishment standards takes into account the number of registered users, the quantity of circulating information, the hit count, and illegal revenue; so long as one area exceeds the standard then you're determined to be in "extremely serious circumstances." An article clicked by one person is completely different from the same article clicked by 10,000 people; are you able to guarantee 24-hour review for your personal blog or forum? If you cannot, then hiding your webpage counters and your pageview numbers may cut down on some unwanted trouble. At the same time, you should keep your website income a secret; there is nothing good and a whole lot bad about making your website's income public. Under normal circumstances, this is a standard for determining punishment. The greater your website's income, the more serious the problem, and the worse off you will be.

    Hence, if you have a forum or a guestbook system, you've got a hidden time bomb. "Harmful information" will cause a lot of trouble for the webmaster when it surfaces. So if you have a forum, it's best to put it on a separate domain name and move it to an overseas server unless you can guarantee you'll be online 24 hours a day to prevent every single bit of "harmful information" from being published. Otherwise you're giving them an angle to get you.. So high-risk systems like forums should be moved out. The same goes for guestbooks and comments to blog posts. If you cannot cut off comment functions, then you must implement keyword filters to turn every sensitive word into ××. Doing this will save you a bit of unnecessary trouble.

    In short, there is currently no clear idea about the system for registering blogs, but for most blogs that have a fair number of comments and discussion, it's no good to simply register with MII; you have to go to the local PSB's website to register for it to have any effect. And you must maintain a good relationship with the local PSB. Whatever they want, you give it to them; don't antagonize them, and don't dispute matters of theory with them. Don't say anything when it's not your turn - it won't work, anyway.

    Sources:William Long: The way for standalone blogs to survive  (Chinese)

    Wednesday, August 8, 2007

    About This Blog

    Moonlight Blog is a Chinese news website and Internet news blog founded by William Long. The website's primary focus is social media news, but also covers news and developments in mobile, entertainment, online video, business, web development, technology and gadgets. Moonlight Blog was launched by William Long from his home in Guangdong, China in January 2005.

    Moonlight Blog English Version is my first blog in English, which is set up using WordPress, in this blog, I'll translate some of my Chinese blog into English, also, I'll report the information about Chinese blogosphere, Chinese GreatFireWall, China society and people. Help you meet a real China.

    Tuesday, May 2, 2006

    Top 25 Great Blogger Widgets

    Many people think that Blogger lacks in all of the extra goodies you can add to other platforms like WordPress, but it simply isn’t true. By using widgets you can customize your blog as much as you like by just adding little snippets of code to the sidebars.

    Allow users to talk to you via IM, see what your most popular posts are, or even read news from sites such as Mashable. With these 25 widgets, you can create an even more powerful way of communicating with your visitors, just make sure you don’t overload them with too many!

    Communications Widgets

    Google Talk – Give visitors the ability to talk to you via Google Talk directly from your blog sidebar.

    Jaxtr – Create a widget that allows people to call you on the phone without revealing the phone number to them.

    Meebo Me – Meebo Me will allow you to create a chat box that you can install on your Blogger page, giving you the chance to converse with visitors to your site.

    Skype – The official Skype widget allows you to create various buttons that can show your current status and also allows people to just click it and give you a call.

    Tag-Board – Allows you to add a real-time chat board to your blog that your visitors and you can use to converse.

    Social Widgets

    Delicious Linkrolls – Share your Delicious bookmarks with the world with this easy to install linkroll widget.

    FriendFeed Widget – Share all of your FriendFeed activity with the readers of your site.

    Google Friend Connect – A makeshift social network that runs across any site that has installed Google Friend Connect. You can join a site, see the other members, play games and more.

    LinkedInABox – LinkedInABox retrieves your LinkedIn profile to display on your blog, allowing people to look through things such as your specialties and experience.

    MyBlogLog – If someone visits your blog that is also a member of MyBlogLog, their avatar and username will appear in the box. You can then click on any person to check out their profile on the service.

    Twitter – Add your Twitter stream to your blog and display anywhere from your last tweet to the last twenty. Also gives a link for people to be able to follow you.

    Share on Facebook – A simple widget that allows your readers to share items from your blog on Facebook.

    SocialFeed – A miniature lifestreaming widget that broadcasts your activities on sites such as Twitter, StumbleUpon, Last.fm and so on. Has several different skins you can choose from.

    Utility Widgets

    Add This – The popular social bookmarking button is available for Blogger accounts.

    Easy Comments – This widget allows you to add commenting to any page of your site by placing the widget at the bottom of a page. Allows people to say if they liked the comment, includes comment threading and more.

    Google Search – Add an AJAX powered Google search box to your blog that you can allow to search the web and your blog, or even just restrict it to the contents of your site.

    Popular Posts – This widget will take a look at your comments, up to the last 5,000, and generate a list of which posts had the most conversation around them.

    Recent Comments – Display the most recent comments on your blog in this widget so that readers can join in the conversation.

    Related Posts – Not so much a widget as a hack, this will give you the related post functionality that so many WordPress powered blogs use.

    ShareThis – The highly customizable green button that ShareThis is known for can be added to your blog. Choose if you want it for social bookmarking, users emailing your posts and more.

    Shout List Icons – Be the king (or queen) of social sharing with this widget that generates icons for over 30 social sites your blog can be added to.

    Tag/Label Cloud – Gives you the ability to install a traditional tag cloud in your sidebar so people can see what you write about the most.

    Miscellaneous Widgets

    Flickr – You can generate an HTML or Flash based badge of your photo stream to share your images with your visitors.

    Mashable – Yes, now you too can share the best web-related news on your blog with the Mashable widget.

    Picasa Albums – Display your public Picasa albums in your blog sidebar with this handy widget. (via

    Monday, May 1, 2006

    Top 100 Tools and Themes for Blogger

    WordPress receives a lot of love from the blogging community, but Blogger.com is still a perfectly viable blogging platform for the majority of people.

    In an effort to help those devoted Blogger users, we’ve gathered up the best of our lists about tools, themes and shortcuts for your preferred platform. Take a look through and you are sure to find something that will help you, even if you didn’t know you were looking for it!

    Free Template Resources

    5ColumnTemplate.Blogspot.com – This site only offers one template with five variations, but it isn’t every day you see a five column theme for any blogging platform, and it is actually pretty clean in presentation.

    AllBlogTools.com – A collection of over 100 templates from an assortment of a lot of smaller designers. You can look them up by layout, color, subject matter and so on.

    Blogger-Templates.Blogspot.com – Keeps a small selection of top-notch Blogger themes up and running.

    Blogger-Templates.Deceblog.net – A small selection of unique themes for Blogger accounts.

    Blogger-Templates-Directory.Blogspot.com – A large directory of Blogger templates, links to resources for further development and a whole lot more.

    BloggerTemplates.org – Doesn’t seem to have been updated since it originally launched, but all of the templates still work, and have a lot of resemblance to WordPress themes.

    BlogspotTemplates.Blogspot.com – Several pages of Blogger templates with tips on how to use them.

    BlogspotTemplate.com – Right around 100 templates for Blogger of varying styles and colors.

    BlogTemplates.Noipo.org – A small selection of graphical and text based templates for your blog.

    BTemplates.com – Features a wide assortment of over 600 free Blogger templates that can be browsed by category, tag, number of downloads and so on.

    Carl Galloway’s Blogger Templates – A small selection of some fairly unique templates that haven’t been updated in some time, but are still fully functional.

    FinalSense.com – Offers over 300 templates for your Blogger account. Have just about every theme and color combination that you can think of.

    FreeBlogger-Templates.Blogspot.com – Focuses heavily on simplified Blogger templates that make for the easiest reading possible.

    FreeTemplates.Blogspot.coms – A blog dedicated to bringing you nothing but free Blogger templates. Nicely categorized, and easy to browse.

    FreshBloggerTemplates.Blogspot.com – It has been a while since this site released any new templates, but their designs are very clean and still in working order.

    Gecko & Fly Blogger Templates – Offers many Blogger templates, most of which are in a more “classic” style, as well as tutorials on how to tweak your blog even further.

    GoSuBlogger.com – A large selection of free templates that mix original work with converted WordPress themes.

    Isnaini.com – A large and varied collection of templates for use on Blogger, along with a detailed tutorial on how to properly insert them into your account.

    JackBook.com – Besides offering a large selection of free templates, with a heavy saturation of video game inspired themes, JackBook also offers tips and pointers on better SEO for your blog.

    OurBlogTemplates.com – An odd mix of nearly 200 free templates for you to use and with a dash of reviews of DSLR cameras.

    PannaSmontana Templates – Numerous free templates for Blogger, but the site is entirely in Italian. Thankfully it is well designed and you can find your way around.

    Public-Template.Blogspot.com – Features a mixture of free templates for you to download, tutorials on how to make your own, and admiration for templates they enjoy.

    Simple-Blogskins.Blogspot.com – Offers a handful of free skins for your Blogger account.

    Template-Godown.com – A site specializing in converting WordPress themes to the Blogger friendly XML format.

    WP-Themes.us – Yes, the name points to them being all about WordPress themes, but they also provide a nice selection of free templates for Blogger.

    Yanku-Template.Blogspot.com – Offers some very slick looking, free, Blogger templates of the 2 and 3-column varieties.

    Premium Template Resources

    ChicSassyDesigns.Blogspot.com – Offers up pre-built templates you can buy, will design unique themes and offers background images for sale that you can build your own template around.

    PaperbackDesigns.Blogspot.com – Offers free themes and sidebar badges in addition to doing custom designed templates for a fee.

    SuckMyLolly.com – A mixture of free and premium themes for your Blogger account. Very colorful in design and lacking the traditional Blogger look.

    Tips & Tricks for Template Design

    Firdamatic Template Generator – Allows you to generate 2 or 3-column templates by just filling in the blanks with your answers.

    PhotoshopSupport.com – Tips for designing your own Blogger template, using Photoshop.

    Fresh and Modern Blogger Templates

    Aspire – A rustic look and calendar in the sidebar make this blog template perfect for history bloggers and traditional food bloggers.

    Cat – Glossy, shiny; great for a web 2.0 centric blog.

    Decorativo – Easy on the eyes, great for a literature-themed blog.

    Erudite – I love the templates at this site. This particular one is very clean and can be easily customized.

    Feminina 1 – Pink background and one for the girls. In fact, you will see a lot more pink in the Feminina series.

    Flower Pink Border – If you’re up for something different, try this combination of black and pink.

    Gemstone – Very nice use of the header area and a good color combination.

    Genesis – A three-column dark color theme with nice header tabs and sidebar header buttons.

    Glass – Another personal favorite of mine, creates that “wow” effect right from the start.

    GossipCity – A three column template that will give your blog that metro look with stars and shines.

    History channel – A template based on the History Channel.

    Jeans – A template that looks like your faded jeans. Quite nice if you are a cowboy. Or like cowboys.

    Leia – A popular template in three column. There are header tabs, and a big blog description space on the right-hand side.

    Looter xp – A simple black and white design with some striking effects.

    Mosaico – A template design in mosaic style.

    Navideno – A eye appealing treat with a fruity flavor.

    O2 – This is a popular WordPress template ported to Blogger. It is a three column template with a bigger sidebar on top of two mini bars on the right hand side.

    Rainbow Garden – Would you like to have your post decorated nicely with the garden flowers? This is the template for you then.

    Red Girl – Quite a nice theme with a red background and an unusual style. You can put your picture in the header.

    Bloggerized AdSense – AdSense-ready template, not too shabby looking.

    iPlantilla – Another Mac-themed template with a very clean look.

    Secret – Nice hand drawings. And quite a unique design that is definitely striking.

    Simplicity 2.0 – This pink color template looks classy and very feminine.

    Styleicious – A nice color combination again with blue and black on this three column template.

    Terra Firma – A nice WordPress ported blog with space for Adsense in the header. Orange and green combination makes it looks fresh and bright.

    1024px – A simple two column template on plain white background without much color, but with great readability.

    Beautiful Blogger Templates

    2-column templates

    Andreas02 – Lots of tab links above the header. You can showcase the description of each active tab on the header.

    Andreas08 – From the same author of the one above. The header is ready to be customized with your own picture.

    Agua – A minimalistic, clean template giving a pure white look.

    Cajas – A blog title in a header that looks like the Blogger navbar and five menu links with multi-color backgrounds that take the place of the traditional blog header.

    Colibri – This reminds you of a garden, doesn’t it?

    Dead – This one can be described as heavy metal/rock style – sinister and dark.

    Eclipse – Another dark theme that brings werewolves to mind. An enchanting template for the dark souls.

    Emire – Beautiful color combination but I wish there was more width for the post and the sidebar.

    Hada-negra – A beautiful template – seductive and pleasing to the eyes.

    Integral – The most striking visual details on this template are its rounded header and the green and sky-blue color combination.

    K2 – A popular WordPress theme cloned for Blogger.

    Minyx – A template that looks like an invitation card. Good use of space in the header.

    Natural – If you are the artistic kind, this one will be a feast for your eyes.

    Neoneon – This is another unique design – rectangular sidebar boxes and spiral main body.

    S08 – A blue color body on a darker blue background – you might have thought it wouldn’t work, but here it is.

    Vertical – As the name suggests, this is a vertically designed clean template. You might want to throw in some more code and utilize the space below the blog title better.

    3-column templates

    Andreas4 – Another popular WordPress template by Andreas cloned for Blogger. The template can be used as a bare bone structure for customization.

    Autumn Grass – I like the color combination and the vertical menu links in the header. There is also sufficient space there for ads and videos.

    Butterfly Magic – Another beautiful color combination, or shall we call it just another butterfly effect

    Columnas – This theme’s peculiar design stands out from the rest of the templates in this list. Nice and clean.


    Cultivado
    – Neat, floral, elegant – this one’s perfect for writing on life, philosophy, thoughts, poetry, love and the like.

    Dark Ritual – A nice theme which somehow reminds us of the Adams Family.

    Erudite – A neat three-column Blogger template with the black color header and the orange color RSS icon gelling well.

    Green Marinee – A long time favorite of many bloggers ported to Blogger. Great use of space, and a nice color combination.

    Hemingway – A beautiful dark template – one column for the post body and three column on the footer.

    Illacrimo – A beautiful clone for Blogger from the WordPress theme Illacrimo, though I feel there should be a way to use more space currently taken by the date-display on the left of the screen.

    Informativo – A similar template to the Columnas template above but with the header, for the less-unconventional bloggers who wants to stick with the proven.

    Minimalista – Another great port from WordPress to Blogger.

    Minyx 2.0 – A great template without pictures; good use of available space.

    Pizza – Don’t be dissuaded by the pizza theme if you are thinking of using this for a different subject blog. The template is highly customizable. The unique element in this template is the header which has been divided into two parts. You can display your blog logo or title on the left-side header box while using the other box for whatever you like.

    Pro – A different looking search box, menu links above the blog title, and the graduated blue header background in a unique design makes this template unique.

    Puerto – Somehow this template makes the post body look grand and majestic.

    The Hobbit – If you are a fan of Tolkien, this one is for you.

    Neo – A 3 column template that reloads in parts allowing faster reading and surfing.

    4-column templates

    Neosapian – The contrast between black and red is striking. The second right-hand sidebar can be widened further and the red header can be used subtly for ads or to display more information. You decide whether to change the current header image or not

    Qwilm – A simple looking great design that can be customized to a great extent.

    Unique Blogger Templates

    Digg – Do you have a burning desire to make your blog look like Digg? This theme turns the normal voting buttons into the dates of your entries and is just a bit of fun. The designer is Turkish, and the download is in his native tongue, but easily understandable.

    Dream Light – Artistic and in your face, but maintains readability with ease.

    Fly Net 02 – A very business-like template that gives you a 4-column header for information as well as a flash intro – if you want it.

    iBlock – Versions of this template are available just for the iPhone/iPod Touch or you can keep the feel for a normal browser if you like.

    Night Club – Made for actual nightclubs, but easily changed. Great for music enthusiasts, DJs, party promoters and more. It’s rare to see a black theme for any blogging platform that is actually readable, and this one handles it beautifully.

    Nyoba – Nyoba gives you three columns as well as two Google AdSense units in prime locations, with an easy to change header image.

    Retro Mac OS Theme – Are you ready to kick it old school style with your blog looking like it escaped from a 1980s Apple? This is your template!

    The Girl – Available in multiple colors with different headers, it very much has a “WordPress feel” to it. If you prefer the convenience of Blogger, this would be a good theme for you to merge the two.

    TotuliPink – Pink templates tend to be loud and hard on the retinas, but this one works quite well without making you want to run for the hills.

    Miscellaneous Blogger Tools

    AvantBlog – Post to your Blogger blog from your Palm or Windows CE device.

    Back up your Blogger Blog – A comprehensive tutorial regarding the backup of your Blogger data.

    Blogger Status – Stay up-to-date with the latest Blogger updates and so-on with the official Blogger blog.

    Google Macintosh Dashboard Widgets – A quick way to post to your blog via the OS X dashboard.

    HaloScan – Integrate trackbacks into Blogger.

    w.bloggar – Windows application for integration with your blog, which includes several features web-based editors don’t offer. Manage various Blogger accounts efficiently. (via)

    Wednesday, April 26, 2006

    Top 30 Resources for Blogger Templates

    Blogger is one of the most popular hosted blogging platforms out there, but many people are still surprised when they learn you can customize the look of your blog well beyond the pre-built options the site offers.

    Finding these other templates can be a bit of a task, so we’ve come up with over 30 resources to help you find brand new designs, converted WordPress themes, people who will build unique custom templates, and more. What are you waiting for? Get out there and freshen up your blog!

    Free Templates

    5ColumnTemplate.Blogspot.com – This site only offers one template with five variations, but it isn’t every day you see a five column theme for any blogging platform, and it is actually pretty clean in presentation.

    AllBlogTools.com – A collection of over 100 templates from an assortment of a lot of smaller designers. You can look them up by layout, color, subject matter and so on.

    Blogger-Templates.Blogspot.com – Keeps a small selection of top-notch Blogger themes up and running.

    Blogger-Templates.Deceblog.net – A small selection of unique themes for Blogger accounts.

    Blogger-Templates-Directory.Blogspot.com – A large directory of Blogger templates, links to resources for further development and a whole lot more.

    BloggerTemplates.org – Doesn’t seem to have been updated since it originally launched, but all of the templates still work, and have a lot of resemblance to WordPress themes.

    BlogspotTemplates.Blogspot.com – Several pages of Blogger templates with tips on how to use them.

    BlogspotTemplate.com – Right around 100 templates for Blogger of varying styles and colors.

    BlogTemplates.Noipo.org – A small selection of graphical and text based templates for your blog.

    BTemplates.com – Features a wide assortment of over 600 free Blogger templates that can be browsed by category, tag, number of downloads and so on.

    Carl Galloway’s Blogger Templates – A small selection of some fairly unique templates that haven’t been updated in some time, but are still fully functional.

    FinalSense.com – Offers over 300 templates for your Blogger account. Have just about every theme and color combination that you can think of.

    FreeBlogger-Templates.Blogspot.com – Focuses heavily on simplified Blogger templates that make for the easiest reading possible.

    FreeTemplates.Blogspot.coms – A blog dedicated to bringing you nothing but free Blogger templates. Nicely categorized, and easy to browse.

    FreshBloggerTemplates.Blogspot.com – It has been a while since this site released any new templates, but their designs are very clean and still in working order.

    Gecko & Fly Blogger Templates – Offers many Blogger templates, most of which are in a more “classic” style, as well as tutorials on how to tweak your blog even further.

    GoSuBlogger.com – A large selection of free templates that mix original work with converted WordPress themes.

    Isnaini.com – A large and varied collection of templates for use on Blogger, along with a detailed tutorial on how to properly insert them into your account.

    JackBook.com – Besides offering a large selection of free templates, with a heavy saturation of video game inspired themes, JackBook also offers tips and pointers on better SEO for your blog.

    OurBlogTemplates.com – An odd mix of nearly 200 free templates for you to use and with a dash of reviews of DSLR cameras.

    PannaSmontana Templates – Numerous free templates for Blogger, but the site is entirely in Italian. Thankfully it is well designed and you can find your way around.

    Public-Template.Blogspot.com – Features a mixture of free templates for you to download, tutorials on how to make your own, and admiration for templates they enjoy.

    Simple-Blogskins.Blogspot.com – Offers a handful of free skins for your Blogger account.

    Template-Godown.com – A site specializing in converting WordPress themes to the Blogger friendly XML format.

    WP-Themes.us – Yes, the name points to them being all about WordPress themes, but they also provide a nice selection of free templates for Blogger.

    Yanku-Template.Blogspot.com – Offers some very slick looking, free, Blogger templates of the 2 and 3-column varieties.

    Premium Templates

    ChicSassyDesigns.Blogspot.com – Offers up pre-built templates you can buy, will design unique themes and offers background images for sale that you can build your own template around.

    PaperbackDesigns.Blogspot.com – Offers free themes and sidebar badges in addition to doing custom designed templates for a fee.

    SuckMyLolly.com – A mixture of free and premium themes for your Blogger account. Very colorful in design and lacking the traditional Blogger look.

    Tips & Tricks for Template Design

    Firdamatic Template Generator – Allows you to generate 2 or 3-column templates by just filling in the blanks with your answers.

    PsycHorm.org – A nicely implemented free Blogger template generator.

    PhotoshopSupport.com – Tips for designing your own Blogger template, using Photoshop. (via)

    Tuesday, April 4, 2006

    Top 30 Blog Directories

    One of the easy attainable promotional tools for blogs are blog directories. Like all directories, they won’t bring you instant fame and thousands of visitors, but they’re still a valuable resource which should not be overlooked. We’ve gathered together 30+ free and paid directories to help you get started.

    Free Directories

    Blog-Search.com – Directory of over 14,000 blogs, also offers a free newsletter with tips for web masters.

    Blogarama.com – Over 63,000 blogs and counting. It shows you how many times people have visited your site, while visitors can leave reviews for the individual sites.

    BlogBunch.com – Simple and straightforward site with numerous categories.

    BlogCatalog.com – There’s no indication of how many blogs are listed in this directory, but they encourage interaction amongst bloggers and readers.

    BlogCode.com – Unique site that lets visitors find blogs with similar topics.

    BlogExplosion.com – Get your blog reviewed by fellow bloggers, will also allow you to post a banner and give you stats. 59,000+ blogs in the directory.

    Blogflux.com – Over 93,000 blogs in their system. Besides being a directory, BlogFlux offers numerous free tools for webmasters and blog owners.

    Bloggernity.com – A plain, straightforward blog directory of over 46,000 sites.

    BlogHop.com – When you join with the other 29,000+ blogs listed here, you tag your site with keywords so surfers can find blogs that match their interests.

    BlogHub.com – A directory of over 35,000 blogs and a community for talking about all things related to blogging.

    BlogListing.net – Free submission except for featured listings.

    BlogRankings.com – 10,000+ blogs separated by categories and having an updated list of recently pinged sites.

    BlogToplist.com – An old style directory that ranks blogs based on an “in/out” system, but is free to use.

    Britblog.com – As the name would suggest, a directory of blogs from Great Britain.

    Findingblog.com – Over 2400 blogs are included in this site. A good place to get yourself noticed if marketed correctly.

    GeekySpeaky.com – A small blog directory that requires only a reciprocal text link.

    GetBlogs.com – Over 11,000 blogs split over 190 categories.

    GlobeOfBlogs.com – Nearly 61,000 blogs and counting. The site seems to be friendly to the non-English speaking crowd.

    IBlogBusiness.com – A directory of over 2500 business-themed blogs.

    LSBlogs.com – A directory that lists more than blogs: it also accepts submissions of blog hosts, tools and related sites.

    MyBlog2U.com – Free submission directory with over 2,000 sites listed.

    JoeAnt.com – Sites at JoeAnt are indexed by category and by region of the world.

    QuickBlogDirectory.com – Another small directory requiring only a reciprocal text link.

    SportsBlogs.com – A directory dedicated to sports blogs of all types.

    TheWeblogReview.com – A unique directory where your site is categorized and reviewed by the staff first.

    WeBlogAlot.com – Allows you to add your RSS feed or a ping.

    Paid Directories

    AliveDirectory.com – All submissions are manually checked, offers annual and permanent pricing options.

    AvivaDirectory.com – A smallish directory at only a little over 750 blogs, but well organized and easy to look at.

    Best Of The Web Blogs – This particular directory charges for review, and it does not guarantee your admission, making it a bit more of an elite source for blogs.

    Bloggeries.com – Reasonably priced as low as $9.99.

    BlogUniverse.com – Submission options as low as $4.99.

    Business.com – A directory for business sites in just about every industry.

    Site-Sift.com – Entry levels for just about every budget.

    Umdum.com – Offers Express and Sponsored listings, all sites are reviewed for quality.

    UncoverTheNet.com – The cheapest solution only gets your site name listed; the site is huge and covers a lot of blogs.

    Yahoo Directory – It’s a big name directory, but quite expensive to get listed in. You are definitely paying for a “brand name” with this one, but it might be worth it. (via)

    Sunday, April 2, 2006

    Top 10 Free Desktop Blog Editors for Windows

    Although many users have gotten used to updating their blogs directly on the web, desktop blog editors have certain advantages, and it would be a shame not to try them out. We’ve gathered 10 free desktop blog editors for Windows; some are plugins, while others are full-featured standalone applications.

    Windows Live Writer

    Windows Live Writer comes from Microsoft and you will have that familiar feeling of working with an Office application while using this desktop blog editor.

    When it comes to features, Live Writer is the most complete desktop blog editor of the lot. It has everything that you would like to see in a blog editor – multiple blog accounts, compatibility with multiple blog platforms, rich text formatting, draft saving, post categorization, picture and tag insertion, spell checking, pinging search engines automatically, and synchronizing draft changes on the editor with the blog.

    What takes Windows Live Writer a step ahead are features such as inserting maps and videos. Its web preview page scores ahead of the rest since you can see your draft just like the way it will appear in your blog online, complete with design, color, and format.

    After its last upgrade, you can now use Windows Live Writer to upload images straight to Picasa for your Blogger blog. Furthermore, Writer is now available in 28 additional languages besides English, which is likely to increase the number of its international language users. One small irritation about Windows Live Writer is that it could be still a little buggy, even after the upgrade.

    ScribeFire

    ScribeFire is a popular Firefox addon and a blog editor that you can use to post to your blog directly from your Firefox browser. After installing ScribeFire, you will see a tiny notepad like icon on your Firefox Status Bar. Clicking on it will open the ScribeFire blog editor on the browser’s active page. This editor will take up half of the screen space. If you right-click the ScribeFire icon, you can choose to open the editor in a new tab or in a separate window.ScribeFire is pretty convenient in a way that you don’t need to install a heavy program and you can open the editor on your browser in a jiffy. It has a rich text formatting feature, HTML page editing, and a live preview option for your posts before publishing them. Image uploads are possible on FTP accounts. You can categorize your posts, insert Technorati tags, and access your del.icio.us page from the ScribeFire page. You can access your last 10 posts and save unpublished drafts as notes, but you cannot insert tables like in Live Writer.

    You can have multiple blog accounts with ScribeFire. It is compatible with multiple blog programs like WordPress, Blogger, Typepad, Drupal, Textpattern, MetaWeblog, etc. Finally, there is a support forum in case you want to ask any of the other ScribeFire users for advice.

    Qumana

    Qumana has one feature that other blog editors don’t have – it has its advertising network, Q ads, integrated into the blog editor. So when you write a post on the editor, you can insert an ad on the blog editor itself. You can define the type of ad that will show up by specifying ad keywords. However, the irony is that Q ads don’t seem to have many ads to display. One ad that was coming up on every post, irrespective of any keyword I type, was about Qumana itself.

    This aside, Qumana has all the requirements of a good blog editor – rick text formatting, multiple blog accounts, insert tags and categories, download recent posts, video insert, etc. The editor is light and I didn’t experience any hang-ups.

    Another things that sets Qumana apart is the DropPad – a small clipboard-like utility where you can drag and drop text, links, and images. You can double click on the DropPad to open the blog editor with all your items inserted already.

    w.Bloggar

    w.Bloggar comes in English, French, German, Portuguese, Spanish versions. It supports a number of blog platforms including Blogger, Movable Type,Typepad, Drupal, WordPress, Live Journal, and others. It can ping your posts to Weblogs, blo.gs, Technorati, and Ping-o-matic.

    Configuring w.Bloggar for your blog, particularly Blogger blogs, can be a bit of a pain, especially if you are not very tech savvy. However you can get certain workarounds written by w.Bloggar users on the w.Bloggar homepage.

    w.Bloggar comes with a number of formatting options, supports multiple blog accounts, has spell check and categories features, and many more. You can set up your FTP to upload files and pictures. The editor comes in the HTML mode and you get to see all the code in your post itself. This might be a bit confusing for new bloggers, but there is a preview mode that should help.

    The best part of w.Bloggar is the speed with which it publishes posts – it’s lightning fast.

    Zoundry

    Zoundry provides an easy set up for your blog accounts. You need to provide your blog url and let Zoundry’s auto-discovery feature find your blog platform and API settings. You can download up to 500 of your blog’s previous entries onto your computer and this can serve as your local blog backup.

    The editor has a WYSIWYG and a HTML interface. You will find plenty of options in the formatting toolbar. Setting post categories and tags for Technorati are supported. There is a also a spell checker and a language translator as well.

    You can use Zoundry to add affiliate links on your posts and earn commissions whenever someone buys through your links.

    Zoundy has a browser toolbar for Firefox and IE that has a ‘Blog This’ feature, and links through which you can share product recommendations on your email or social networking pages. You can also earn shopping rebates using the toolbar.

    Thingamablog

    Thingamablog is an open source blog editor and a feed reader combined into one cool desktop application. It runs independently of any blog host and you can use it for posting to your FTP or SFTP blogs. Thingamablog also provides a set of some blog templates as well if you want to create a new blog.

    Configuring your Thingamablog for the first time might be a bit taxing if you are a newbie. However if you head off to the Thingamablog site, then there is a good tutorial available.

    Thingamablog’s post editor has all the basic formatting options complete with a spell checker. You can see your posts in WYSIWYG or HTML source view. Images can be uploaded from the computer or you can link to an image online. You can set up multiple blog accounts, import entries from RSS feeds, and organize your entries by category.

    Thingamablog requires Java Virtual Machine to be installed on your computer.

    Flock

    Flock has an easy to use blog editor that works with blogging platforms like Blogger, Blogsome, Livejournal, Typepad, WordPress, Xanga, and other self hosted platforms. You can configure multiple blog accounts on it.

    You can use Flock’s web clipboard to collect snippets while surfing the web, add pictures from your Flickr or Photobucket accounts or upload a picture from the computer. Flock also has a Quick Uploader that you can use to upload files on the web.

    Flock’s editor however has a few formatting feature and you are limited to a few font families and font sizes. There are no ‘Insert table’ or ‘Strikethrough’ buttons. Although you can tag your posts, you cannot categorize them.

    Final verdict: you might want to use Flock for quick posts, but the advanced blogger who needs a feature-rich editor might find Flock a bit lacking.

    Blog Desk

    Blog Desk comes in English, German, and Spanish versions and supports multiple blog platforms. However it seems strange that they do not have Blogger on its list of supported blog platforms, which means that those using Blogger have to configure their blogs manually. Blog Desk has some pretty cool features such as the Image Wizard that lets you insert pictures on your blog and edit them as well, dictionaries in 14 languages, frequently used phrases, and a notebook. There is support for Technorati tags, a pinger, and a spell checker too.

    If you are using Blog Desk on Vista, you might have to download the dhtmled.ocx file from the Microsoft download page. Details are given at the Blog Desk FAQ page.

    Post2Blog

    Post2Blog is very light and there are some good features on offer as well. The formatting bar is rich with options and you can insert smileys, strike texts, and add music. There are options to add ads from Amazon in your posts. Other features like Technorati tags or pinging are there as well. Post2Blog also provides good integration with RSS readers like RSS Bandit and Sharp Reader. You can upload images along with your posts on Flicker, Imageshack, or a chosen FTP site. You can download your recent posts and create PDFs of them if you wish.

    Post2blog has Firefox and IE addons and a MS Word toolbar as well so that you can post directly from these places. You can export Post2blog files and settings to any portable device as well. One feature I couldn’t find was inserting post categories.

    Post2Blog is compatible with multiple blog platforms including Blogger, WordPress, Typepad, MovableType, LiveJournal, and Blogware.

    Bleezer

    Bleezer supports multiple blog platforms like Blogger, Movable Type, WordPress, Drupal, etc. and works on Widnows, Mac, and Linux systems. This WYSIWYG tool has the basic formatting options, spell checker, support for Technorati and Del.icio.us tags, post categories, and ping service. You can upload pictures using its ‘Upload File’ feature and by setting up your FTP site.

    Bleezer is a no-frills blog editor whose biggest upside is its lightness; you won’t even feel it’s running, which makes it ideal for users with older computers. (via)

    Monday, March 20, 2006

    Top 20 Online Multiple-Services Blog Pingers

    You need only one multiple-service blog pinger to notify blog search engines, aggregators, and directories whenever you update your blog. But, in case your favorite service goes down or if you feel like experimenting with different ones, here is a list of more than 20 online ping tools and blog pingers that will notify various web services for you.

    Online Multiple-Services Blog Pingers

    Alles Over Ping Service – This is a blog ping service that pings 7 web services. Service is available in Dutch and English.

    AllPodcasts – AllPodcasts is a podcast ping service that pings your feed to 7 podcast directories.

    Autopinger – This is what I call a ping service with a difference. Autopinger pings your blog at regular intervals so that you don’t have to ping manually. It also displays the ping success rate of the sites it pings in percentages. Autopinger pings 25 English services and 19 non-English services. After a ping, it shows you the actual ping response from the services rather than a just success or failure report.

    Blogblip – Currently sends pings to 45 web services. You can request addition of more directories to its list using the form on the site.

    Blogflux Pinger – Pings 17 general services, 7 specialized services, 4 Japanese language services, and one service each in Chinese, Danish, French, German, and Spanish languages.

    Feedburner Pingshot – If you are using Feedburner to burn RSS feeds for your blog, you can activate its Pingshot feature to ping web services automatically every time you update your blog. Feedburner Pingshot pings to 6 web services and you can add 5 more addresses to ping.

    Feed Shark – Pings 16 services that accept blogs, 12 services that accept RSS feeds, and 8 services that accept podcasts. You can view your submission status on your current page itself.

    iPings – iPings is a simple ping service that pings your feed to 32 web services.

    King Ping – Just enter your blog URL at King Ping to have it submitted to 57 web services.

    MyPageRank.Net Ping Service – Simple site that pings your site to 25 web services.

    Pingates – Pingates pings your blog to 37 services.

    Pingerati – You can use this unique service to ping non post information like contacts, events, job information, addresses, geolocations, etc. called microformats to services that accept these microformats like Eventful, Technorati, and Alexa.

    Ping.In – Pings 37 general service sites, 12 non-English services, and 6 special services.

    PingMyBlog – PingMyBlog pings the highest number of services – a whopping 68 search engines. You need to enter your blog name, URL, and feed (optional) to ping. Ping reports are available.

    Pingoat – Pings 26 English search engines, 15 non-English search engines, and 9 special services. You add your blog name, url, and xml feed (optional) to ping. This service also features ping reports.

    Ping-o-Blog – Ping-o-Blog sends pings to 18 general services.

    Ping-o-Matic – Ping-o-Matic is one of the oldest blog ping services around. It pings to 17 general services and 5 specialized services. It says on the site that they regularly check the services to make sure they’re legit and so though they ping to a few number of services, these services are the most important ones.

    Pingsalot – Pingsalot pings your blog to 24 active servers. It checks your site URL for availability before pinging, and is your site fails to respond, pings are not sent out.

    Pings.ws – Pings.ws pings your feed to 13 web services.

    Miscellaneous Ping Tools

    Pingomation – Pingomation can check if your blog has recently pinged Ping-o-Matic.

    Sitemapr.us – If you have updated your blog’s sitemap and want to ping the update, this is a tool you should use. Sitemapr.us pings Google, Yahoo!, and Ask.com about your updated sitemap.

    Twitbacker – Twitbacker is a service to ping your blog update to Twitter. (via)