What IS a Blog?

### Creates H3

(this is a sticky post)

H4 Looks Like This

In his 2011 book, Joomla! 1.6: A User’s Guide – Building a Successful Joomla! Powered Website, Barrie North describes “what is a blog?”  Here is my summary of his topic:

What IS a blog?
* communication medium: typically frequent brief posts about a particular subject
* unique communication style: honest first-person voice
frequent posting: daily? weekly?
* usually posts are brief, only introductory text is shown on the main page, along with a “read more link
* make regular posts to build a loyal readership that will have consistent expectations about your blog content

Carol’s comment: who has time to regularly read anyone’s blog? Even as much as I value Jacob Nielsen’s “Alert Box,” I only visit when I have time to read, and first I search through his recent topic lists to choose what to read. Or I read someone’s blog post when it turns up in Google search results.

Which platform? Barrie says pick one that’s extensible to other types of web pages. In 2011, when Barrie North published his book, WordPress was (probably?) not so extensible.  Hence Joomla was the choice.  Now (in 2015) WordPress has evolved into a more general website platform.

How to order posts?

What Features are Needed on a Blog Site?

In his 2011 book, Joomla! 1.6: A User’s Guide – Building a Successful Joomla! Powered Website, Barrie North describes the features needed on a blog site.  I looked at each feature to see how it was implemented on THIS site, my 2015 WordPress practice website.

Flexible layout: defined by your WordPress Theme – make yours stand out a little
— Theme Twenty Fifteen is active, I chose the customize tab to set colors, header image, and choose latest posts for my front page.

Browser-based editing:
— From dashboard -> Posts

Automated publishing: instead of FTP, click a button
— yes, click the Update or Publish button to update or publish my post

Categories: split your post into categories that will make them easier to find
— From the right-hand side of editing a post, add a category for your blog post and assign your post to this category. I created a category “Blogging” and assigned my post to it.

— where do “Tags” fit in? I created a tag “Blogging” and assigned it to my post.

Search Engine Optimized URL’s: have a URL that includes keywords about your post
— I see that my post’s URL automatically ends with my post’s title words dash-separated

Comment systems: the number one way your site becomes “sticky”
— “Leave a Reply” is turned on by default
— why do I care about the commentor’s website?
— How to moderate comments? It looks like comments await moderation by default.

WordPress blog site home page
My WP practice site’s home page. I right-aligned this automatically captioned image by changing “align” from “alignnone” to “alignright”

Syndication Feeds: Push your post onto other RSS readers, have your posts appear automatically on someone else’s website
— by default there’a an “Entries RSS” in my blog’s “META” menu. Clicking on it leads to a page “Subscribe to this feed using ‘Live Bookmarks.’ ” It created a link within my browser bookmarks. Looks nice: gives website title, subtitle, linked titles to each blog post, date of post and the post itself.
— actually, the bookmark turns into a folder of links to posts. I’d rather use the feed URL, which is http://wp.elizahost.com/feed/

Email notification: Notify a mailing list when you’ve added a post, for marketing purposes
— How?

Search: your blog archive will soon be bursting. Provide a search capability to help site visitors find your blog posts; note some people prefer to browse
— I see the search box is built in

TrackBack:
TrackBacks are complex, but the bottom line is that you read a post, and you comment about it on your blog. You place the URL to the post in yours, and the blog picks up your post and leaves it as a comment in the other’s post.

I practiced the trackback technique via this post.

— It sounds like a trackback is a way to get someone else to link to your blog. I presume trackback posts can be moderated.


 

What do you think?  Since 2011, have any of these features become obsolete?  Are there NEW features that you consider essential to a blog?

Decentralizing Applications

Learning about TrackBacks: Barrie North writes: TrackBacks are complex, but the bottom line is that you read a post, and you comment about it on your blog.  You place the URL to the post in yours, and the blog picks up your post and leaves it as a comment in the other’s post.

Let’s practice.  I believe this blog post constitutes a comment about another’s blog post.

As written by Chris Daft at http://riversonicsolutions.com/blog.html:

Adam B. Levine points out that Uber is an analog of Napster. Centralized services become targets for legal challenges.   Decentralized services “test a higher level of regulatory resistance.”

The specific blog post is here: http://riversonicsolutions.tumblr.com/post/123471804693/decentralizing-applications

I’d agree with this automatic commenting in another’s post, if the “other” could moderate such comments before they appeared.