July 2009 Update: added BlogDesk. So far I’ve not been able to find anything apart from Windows Live Writer that works with WordPress page for Windows. (Ecto’s latest release apparently does support it.)
Blogging clients allow you to prepare posts and then upload them directly. Useful for
- composing drafts of posts offline
- easier editing of HTML
- easier inserting and handling of photos
- easier editing of existing posts
Here’s a list of the ones I know of. Any additions welcome.
- Qumana include easy text formatting and image insertion, simple Technorati tagging, and advertising insertion with Q Ads. Make money from your blog content by inserting the ads of your choice with the built-in Q Ads tool. (free: XP/Mac)
- ecto a feature-rich desktop blogging client for MacOSX and Windows, supporting a wide range of weblog systems, such as Blogger, Blojsom, Drupal, MovableType, Nucleus, TypePad, WordPress, and more. (free; thanks Joost)
- w.bloggar The tireless Marcelo Cabral who runs it constantly updates the software to work with new blogging sites. It’s free, but he welcomes donations.
- Post2Blog handy blog editor with live spell-checking support for pro-bloggers. ($40, Windows only)
- SharpMT good for MovableType and TypePad. Windows only; free.
- Windows Live Writer “makes it easier to compose compelling blog posts using Windows Live Spaces or your current blog service.” Free, XP only
- Zempt Offers a lot of useful features, including assigning more than one category to a post. Zempt is also free but would be happy to get donations. Works with all Movable Type compatible sites. (Windows, Linux, Mac.)
- BlogJet a new version, 2.0, is out that supports YouTube and Flickr. I used to use this all the time, and plan to try this one. $40, though, is still $40. Windows only
- BlogWizard allows you to create, edit and publish your blog entries to the server where your weBlog is located. BlogWizard works with all major weBlog services that support the Blogger xml-rpc engine. BlogWizard has an easy to use WysiWyg interface, in which you can manipulate the text anyway you want, make it bold, bigger, smaller, insert images and hyperlinks. Costs: $23
- Blogger for Word Blogger toolbar will be added to Word allowing you to publish to your blog, save drafts and edit posts (Free; XP and Word required)
- MacJournal lets you publish your work as a blog to any of the popular blogging services, including your .mac account. Also possible to keep your journal at your fingertips, even when you’re on the road. (Macs only; $35)
- BlogDesk BlogdDesk BlogDesk is free, works with WordPress, MovableType, Drupal, Serendipity and ExpressionEngine.
- MarsEdit: Mac only, but very capable, according to Mike Rohde (thanks, Mike)
Also note that Microsoft Office 2007 lets you post to a blog, and include some pretty cool features. So does Flock. There are also some Firefox extensions:
- Performancing Heavy duty extension with all the bells and whistles
- Deepest Sender instead of having to go to the Update page on LiveJournal/WordPress/Blogger/whatever, or loading up a separate client program, all you have to do is hit Ctrl+, or click the button in your toolbar, and you can start posting.
WordPress has a list of blogging clients here. No mention of support for pages.
Another good list here.
Seems as if there’s a bit of a groundswell building against internal links, which I got all upset about a few months ago. (internal linking is where you place a link on a word like, say, Google, but instead of actually linking to Google you link to another page on your own blog about Google.) Amit from Digital Inspiration points out that
Valleywag, the Silicon Valley gossip blog that everyone hates but still reads, always practiced excessive internal linking but good sense prevailed at Gawker and they have suddenly changed that habit.
Amit also points to Shane at the Daily Telegraph, who is complaining about the same practice. Etre.com points out how brazen TechCrunch are at doing it, but points out that Mashable and Engadget continue to do so.
I find it personally annoying because I tend to drag links into PersonalBrain or elsewhere and expect a link that says ‘Flock’ to go to Flock. But it’s also dishonest, like putting an EXIT sign over a door in a shop which instead goes into another part of the shop. It’s against the principles of the net, and, frankly, tells me that something is wrong in the state of Web 2.0 if this kind of thing is considered acceptable or even good practice.
What to do? Maybe a name-and-shame list until these recalcitrants start respecting the intelligence of their readers?
A Lesson from Valleywag – Good Linking Etiquettes | India Inc.
Blogged with Flock
Tags: techcrunch, valleywag, web2.0, sleaze, links
Flock, which I wrote about a few months back, is now in public beta (meaning ordinary folks can use it without too much weeping). TechCrunch carries an interview with the folks behind it.
What’s so good about it? Well, it’s all about trying to build Web 2.0 into the browser, so the browser isn’t so much a browser as a tool to upload photos, blog, read RSS, that kind of thing. You can drag a photo and publish it, view photos across the top of the browser, search faster (the search box includes results that update as you type the word.)
I’m most interested in the blogging tool. And while it’s better, it sure ain’t perfect. I’d like to see a proper editor with all the features of an editor, including shortcuts (Control + k for inserting link seems to be a pretty well-defined standard, for example.) That said, it seems a tad more stable than BlogJet, for which one would have to pay money.
How does these guys make money? Mainly through selling the spots in the search box at the top right corner, I believe. Yahoo! seems to rule the roost at the moment, and it doesn’t seem possible to change that as the default without opening a separate preferences window, unless I’m missing something. I assume that extra step is deliberate, something most folks wouldn’t bother to do.
Anyway, another browser can’t be bad news. I’m not going to dump Firefox for now, but I think I’ll keep Flock a-flickering too for now.
technorati tags:browsers, blogtools, rss
Blogged with Flock
Not always being online, I love to use software that allows you to compose blog posts offline. My current favorite is BlogJet, but it’s not cheap and it often throws up error messages. I keep a list of those that are worth looking at (and more suggestions are always welcome.) This post is being written with a new one I’ve not come across before: SharpMT produced by Randy L. Santi. So far it looks pretty good, though it only works with Movable Type-based blogs, and it doesn’t have the WYSIWYG feel of BlogJet. Still, it’s great to see more contenders out in the field. I’d love to see the ability to add technorati tags a la Flock but perhaps that’s in the works.
This week’s column on WSJ.com (subscription only, I’m afraid) is about Flock, or about the things that Flock will help us do more easily, such as post to blogs, post to Flickr, turn boring bookmarks into a wealth of shared knowledge on del.icio.us, and generally make the browser a real platform for productivity:
One of the fun things about the Internet is that just when you think the game is over, somebody moves the goal posts, shoots the ref and says the rules have changed. At least that’s the way I see it with a new browser called Flock.
You’re no doubt familiar with the Web browser wars of the mid-1990s. Microsoft’s Bill Gates came to realize the importance of the Internet late, but quickly got up to speed and crushed the poor old Netscape browser by offering Internet Explorer for free. The epilogue is that despite some upstart threats from a Scandinavian company called Opera and an open source free-for-all called Firefox, Internet Explorer still dominates the Web. In sporting parlance, it’s a bit like Microsoft has parked a big bus in front of the goal, so no one else can score.
But I don’t think that’s the whole story. For the browser, you see, is emerging from a passive click-and-read experience to a place where you can get your work done and even share it with others.
I’m playing around with the new browser Flock, which promises to be an interesting new take on browsers. This posting is actually being prepared and sent from within Flock. Some elements look a bit odd, but let’s see how it goes.