When writing a blog post I place links to relevant sources and material. I choose my links carefully and they represent what I think fits the topic best.
Trackback is an intentional way of notifying other blogs because WordPress requires you to manually enter the blog’s trackback link. It also allows you to send a notification to another blog even if you don’t explicitly link to them in the post. This may be done in an attempt to include the other blog in the conversation. On top of that trackbacks may be considered “the real letters of recommendation on the web.” However, with the increasing disappearing of a visible trackback link is it still a popular feature?
With 2007 drawing to a close, I’m sure many of us are doing informal blog reviews, namely looking at the goals wet set at the start of 2007 and seeing how well we did at meeting them. The reviews will help us dream up our goals for 2008.
Certainly, the most obvious thing to track is how much money a blog has made over the past year. Personally, money isn’t my primary goal: I didn’t start blogging as a business venture. There are many reasons why people blog, and each will define a different set of criteria for success.
There are many different ways to write a blog posts. Some people prefer a simple text editor, an offline blogging tool or simply the write post area of your blog software. There are so many tools available that it is a matter of trying to find the right one for your personal posting pattern.
I am still trying to find the perfect writing environment. I often use a no-nonsense simple text editor, or a program such as Dark Room (Windows) or WriteRoom (Mac) that provides me with a full-screen, semi-distraction free writing environment. But because these programs are so basic it means that I will have to manually insert all the links. Am I lazy? What about the oldskool bloggers that manually coded their whole blog?
Blog software spoiled me.
You may have also discovered a surge in trackback spam recently as autoblogging software is being used by more and more spammers to reach out and cull RSS feeds. This phenomenon has led to many disabling trackbacks, or raising the “blacklist” level so high that you might never see some trackbacks again. Or, as some newer remotely-hosted commenting technologies like IntenseDebate and Disqus show, they simply do not show trackbacks because of the spam problem.
[As an aside, that’s not to say that they will never implement it; I have it on good account that Disqus will probably implement it as soon as they *can* find a way to clean up the spam-detecting components in the trackback issue.]
The problem is that in my own blogging success, I have found trackbacks to be instrumental.
Here’s a simple activity that each time I engage in, afterwards I feel refreshed and rejuvenated for another week of blogging.
Whenever I’m stuck in a rut, an activity I enjoy for a “reboot” is a brisk walk or short hike away from civilization. There’s something refreshing about wandering in unfamiliar territory, the change of scenery, and enjoying the change of perspective.
Lorelle previously noted that her personal number one flaw in WordPress is the commenting system. Not only is commenting flawed in WordPress it is flawed in the whole blogosphere. The blogosphere is a distributed network that scatters your comments around the different blogs you comment on. How do you know if someone replied to your comment? How do you keep track of the discussion you might be participating in?
There are two kinds of comments that we need to keep track of: Comments left by other people on your blog and comments left by you on other blogs. How do we manage these comments?
Chances are I’m not reading your blog. That’s not because I don’t like you, most likely I don’t even know you exist, and that’s your fault.
Yes, you heard me. Your fault. It’s something you can remedy though.
There are a gazillion blogs out there, and most of them suck, to be honest. Yours might not, though, so I’m willing to have a look. But how am I to find it? And why should I stay along at all? [Read more…]
For those with a Mac, you’ve likely read tons about the newest version of OS X, Leopard – or merely rushed out as soon as it was released and bought it – as I did. After playing around with this new operating system for a few days, I’ve already settled on a few features that will definitely help my blogging efficiency – in fact, I used some to write this post.
When Web 2.0 first began with Google and Craigslist, one of the “innovations” was simplicity itself – empty, uncluttered designs that allowed users to get what needed to be done with a minimum of design elements.
I feel this basic concept has been forgotten recently, what with widgets, ads, videos, monetization, polls, spam, and splogs. Some blogs are so obscured with extra stuff that the content – the post itself – is nearly impossible to find.
It may be time to get back to basics. This week, I noticed several articles about clutter reduction, enough to say that excesses may be reversing and we’re entering a “clutter-reduction equals increased productivity” trend:
- Blain at Stock Trading To Go did a guest post at Zenhabits called Getting Productive, and a Clean Desk. He has some good suggestions, namely a daily task list (in order to avoid distractions), waking up earlier, and discipline to avoid procrastination.
- An article from The Consumerist suggests one way to feel richer is to remove clutter, suggesting that “unnecessary objects steal energy and attention”. This could be a reference to the wasted time cleaning, things, looking for things, or maintaining things – all time that could be spent being productive. Now imagine how visiting a cluttered blog is like entering a cluttered room.
- Newsweek: The Latte-Era Grinds Down: A sagging economy is goading people to refocus their lifestyles toward the essentials.
Since upgrading to WordPress 2.3 I’ve been on a quest to “declutter” my blog: cleaning it up for the specific purposes of increasing readability, removing distractions, and improving load time. Here’s a short list of what I’ve achieved so far: