December 30, 2009

Can Tweetie (And Twittelator) Help Twitter Kill Off Old School Retweets?


Last month Twitter launched its new retweet feature in order to eliminate confusion and authenticate user quotes (as the copy & paste method was being exploited by spammers).

Although the new retweet feature solved the latter issue, it led to more confusion in the twittersphere as many users became upset at “seeing new faces” in their tweet stream. read more

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December 28, 2009

Movable Type Monday: Smileys, GPS, Title Length, and More

Filed as Features with 4 comments

Happy Monday, folks! This week we’ve got a handful of new plugins for you. I have not had a chance to try these personally, so if anybody has, please let us know what you think in the comments.

AutoSmileysSebastian Böthin has written a plugin that replaces text-based emoticons with images. The plugin comes with a default list of emoticons to replace, but you can customize that list as much as you want. And AutoSmileys can be used just about anywhere — entries, comments, pages, and more.

Garmin Connect Action StreamGarmin Connect is a social training log that lets you track and share your training activities using Garmin GPS devices. This plugin from Scott Hill adds those activities to your Action Stream. read more

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Saying Farewell to the Blog Herald

On March 15, 2007 I wrote my first article for The Blog Herald. It was a very basic piece about fair use and blogging, sticking to my “home field” of copyright and blogging legal issues. Since then, nearly every Monday, I’ve written a column, well over 125 total.

During all of this time, I made a lot of great friends and covered a lot of topics. Though I started in just the legal field, I quickly branched out into other areas that might be of interest to bloggers including WordPress-related news as well was tips, tricks and applications that I discovered as well as blogging news.

However, today is the day where I announce that my time with the Blog Herald is now at an end. It has been a wonderful two-and-a-half years, but a lot has changed in that time. The biggest change is that, in August, I joined CopyByte.com, a Web startup I now manage that deals with practical copyright enforcement. It is that project that now takes up the bulk of my time.

As the year winds down to a close, with Paul Scrivens taking over as SplashPress’ Media Publisher and a bright future ahead for the Blog Herald, as well as all of SplashPress’ sites, the time has come for me to step aside both to focus on my new ventures and make room for the new faces and ideas to come to the site.

So, in this, my last column for the Blog Herald, I wanted to take a moment to give thanks to everyone who has helped me over the years here, especially Mark Saunders for taking a chance on an unknown bloggers such as myself, the many editors I have worked with over the years here at the Blog Herald and the other writers here who I have worked with proudly.

Thank you very much everyone for two and a half great years and I’m looking forward to seeing what great things come from the Blog Herald in the coming months and years.

I may not be writing my usual Monday columns, but I will definitely be around…

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December 27, 2009

Blogging Is Better With Buddha

Filed as Guides with 6 comments

budWhenever writing about a religion or philosophy, things get sticky, and that’s why I often avoid it. There are many arms of Buddhism, and I don’t pretend to be an expert – only an always-improving student.

Buddhism doesn’t care if you were born into another religion or whether or not you believe in a God. It is a practice rather than belief. I propose that you can improve your blogging skills if you travel the The Noble Eightfold Path as you write. This is the road Buddhists travel down as they strive for enlightenment.

RIGHT VIEW: Buddhism is based on the Four Noble Truths (1. There is suffering. 2. I recognize that there is suffering. 3. Suffering can be stopped. 4. The way to stop suffering is The Eightfold Path.)

As you write, look deeply at your subject and keep in mind that nothing is permanent. Understand the law of karma. Karma is determined by everything we do, say and think. By providing your audience with mindful blog posts, you will increase your Karma credit. (And this comes in handy, because no one is perfect!) read more

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Sunday Morning SEO: Will Twitter and Facebook Be More Important to SEO?

Filed as Features with 5 comments

twitter-facebook-logosRand Fishkin has an interesting prediction in his recent post, 8 Predictions for SEO in 2010. He believes that Twitter will become a part of Google’s ranking algorithm.

His argument is that Google has a history of innovating their algorithm to take account the most relevant link sources. And now it seems that Twitter has become the top place to share links instead of blogs and social news sites.

read more

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December 24, 2009

‘Twas The Blog Before Christmas…


Twas the blog before Christmas,
When all through the server
Not a spam bot was stirring,
Not even a flammer

The template was all designed with care,
In hopes that a blog update would soon appear. read more

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December 23, 2009

Why Every Blogger NEEDS A Smart Phone


So about an hour (or two) ago, my PC encountered the infamous Blue Screen of Death, an event that was ironically triggered by iTunes having “heart attack” while syncing to my iPhone.

Normally when an event like this happens I break out into a geek sweat, moaning about all of the software I have to redownload and burning the midnight oil restoring backups from the cloud. read more

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December 21, 2009

Movable Type Monday: jQuery Comments, Asset Listings, Safari Support, and More

Filed as Features with 1 comment

Happy Monday, folks! Things seem to be a bit slow in the Movable Type community right now. I think it’s a combination of the holidays and impending release of MT5. Still, we’ve got a few news items to tell you about.

Mike from Code Monkey Ramblings has forked Byrne Reese’s jQuery Comment plugin. This doesn’t seem to be a radical departure from the original. Instead, Mike has concentrated on small tweaks that improve the plugin and extend its compatibility with existing themes. read more

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WordPress 2.9 Released Plus an Extra Surprise

Filed as News with 7 comments

wordpressorg-logo

On Saturday Automattic announced the release of WordPress 2.9, the newest version of their popular blogging platform, bringing with it a whole new slate of features, bug fixes and other improvements.

With the update also comes the usual mix of upgrade heartburn including broken plugins, fractured themes and the general time of uploading. However, those issues have already been largely mitigated by previous features, including the automatic upgrade feature, and new ones, including multiple plugin updates and plugin compatibility checks.

So as WordPress users hover their mouse over “Update” buttons, be they in WordPress or their host’s control panel, the question becomes what’s new and is it worthwhile for me?

The answer, from what I’ve seen, seems to be a resounding “Yes!” read more

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December 20, 2009

Sunday Morning SEO: Keywords Vs “Clever” Words

Filed as Features with 5 comments

keywordsSean Platt recently wrote about the power of keywords for Copyblogger. When he first started his business blog, he ignored keywords and just focused on developing a unique writing style. He got a lot of compliments for his writing but his blog was not making much money.

He switched his focus from “clever” writing to SEO writing by including keywords in his posts. The result was huge. He got more traffic and links and he made a lot of money. read more

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