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Sunday, July 17, 2005

Blog Tools -Multiple Options Abound

Choosing from multiple options for blog publishing is always a contentious issue. A few friends pointed me to OJR's good analysis of the options available and an easy referenceaeble comparison chart.The Web publishing format is gaining popularity as a legitimate business and marketing tool. Technologically savvy businesses are using blogs, or weblogs, to build relationships with their customers by sharing information, corporate culture and expertise. Every new blog publisher faces the problem of selecting, installing and configuring blog software. The array of possible options and configurations varies widely. While all blog software involves a learning curve, the amount of customization possible means that selecting the right software is important for a quicker, easier start.
There are two kinds of blog software available to the hopeful blog publisher. The first is hosted blog software. A hosted blog is one where all data and the publishing interface reside on the server of the blogging software company. The alternative is independent blog software that must be downloaded from the blogging software company and installed on a Web server. There are pluses and minuses to both. In both cases, the blog is set up and controlled by a database that handles the posts and the way they may be sliced and diced for display. Nearly all blog software stores your posts in a database, which permits handy things like searching and archiving.The blog's appearance and layout is usually controlled by a set of templates that includes information about things like the background color and logo placement, as well as the formatting information for how many posts are displayed on the front page. The power of databased content and templates working together has produced the Weblog phenomenon – easily updated Web sites that usually display updated content from most to least recent, along with reader comments and feedback. The comparison chart is available here.

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