October 15, 2008

To everyone who ever told me I should leave Blogger.

Read this.

38 comments:

Simon said...

I don't think you should leave Blogger, but I do think that it's prudent to be aware of and preserve your options to do so if the situation demands. Blogger does have advantages, to be sure, but it does also have limitations, as you know, limitations that are sometimes not very important and at other times loom large.

Chip Ahoy said...

The "so anyway" formulation kills me every time. It's up there with my favorite funniest bad ways to open a paragraph.

* sticks Bulwer Lytton star on paragraph *

Doyle said...

I may have suggested you leave blogging, but that's different.

jdeeripper said...

Stay in Blogger but leave Madison. Go back to Brooklyn Heights, the cityscape photos were insane.

All the Madison photos deserve a lameness tag except the Palladian photoshopped one with the Biden duck and the extra crowd.

Zeb Quinn said...

Or, as they put it in the paint-by-numbers exhibit at the Smithstonian, "Paint by Number: Accounting for Taste in the 1950s revisits the hobby from the vantage point of the artists and entrepreneurs who created the popular paint kits, the cultural critics who reviled them, and the hobbyists who happily completed them and hung them in their homes. Although many critics saw "number painting" as a symbol of the mindless conformity gripping 1950s America, paint by number had a peculiarly American virtue. It invited people who had never before held a paintbrush to enter a world of art and creativity."

Chip Ahoy said...

I keep a record of logon IDs in a coded file. Wordpress rejected my logon ID that I knew to be correct. It gives two options. Tried both Wordpress sends me my ID which matches the one I entered. I enter it again. It rejects it again, even though it just sent it to me. Try a different email address. Error message "That address is already taken" check my records farther down. Find the password I used for that email address. Seems I went through all this before. Enter the password. It's rejected. Have Wordpress send the password. It matches. Another 'nuther email address. Matches. Rejected. Matches. Rejected. Matches. Rejected. I'm officially dropped into Wordpress circular Hell. Get brilliant idea to open a new email account. That works. Once. Next login rejected! So, I've given up on Wordpress entirely until news comes by asteroid they've got their password logon ID thing worked out.

¿Sabe usted lo que significa? Significa Wordpress chupa la iguana muy grande -- the big lizard.

Simon said...

Chip Ahoy said...
"The 'so anyway' formulation kills me every time. It's up there with my favorite funniest bad ways to open a paragraph."

Up with "oh, and..."!

Mrs. Topsy Canning said...

http://web.archive.org/web/20010715110852/www.law.wisc.edu/facstaff/biog.asp?First=Ann&Last=Althouse


___________________

Palladian said...

Sorry Ann, but the deficiencies of one piece of software do not mitigate the greater deficiencies of another. Blogger is a terrible piece of software that give you almost no control over your site and makes the experience of reading and leaving comments unpleasant for your readers. Now that you routinely receive over 200 comments on many posts, I would again suggest you reconsider your obstinate refusal to make your good website better. Aesthetics matter. Ease of use matters. Efficiency matters. Scalability matters. Blogger provides none of them.

EDH said...

Ann,

FWIW. A couple of times recently I had your page dump out MS Explorer on a couple of different machines.

It seemed to be connected to posts with heavy YouTube embeds.

Simon said...

What amuses me is that the older version of Ann's UW homepage that Maxine linked above is actually better than the current one. If the present version is to be believed, Althouse's entire contribution to the scholarly canon is a short essay entitled "I Am in Love With Blogging" - a most modest, indeed inauspicious, claim for a most auspicious scholar.

AllenS said...

Keep Blogger, drop Obama.

Theo Boehm said...

Actually, Simon, Maxine, above, didn't "link." She expected us to cut and paste.

I click. I don't cut-and-paste.

Ms. Topsy-Turvy, and all the rest of the lazy commentariat: If you expect me to read something you have in mind, YOU do the damn work so I can read it easily!

We're having a discussion of blogging software, and people can't create a live link? Spare me.

Simon said...

Theo, that's true, but for Althouse I'll go the extra mile. :)

Michiel said...

At the very least you should move to a independent domain name - Blogger supports this. As long as your domain is "althouse.blogspot.com" you can never leave Blogger.

And while althouse.com is taken, cruelneutrality.net is still available!

Incidentically, I think you should leave Blogger (and not for WordPress). You cultivate your comments like a garden, and Blogger doesn't even provide a lawnmover! Lots of people here who'd love to help.

Rose said...

I love Blogger. I have a backup Wordpress, and I periodically import all the posts just in case.

Wordpress has a couple of advantages - you can edit comments, for example (that can be very bad, but it can also allow you to take out the profane and leave a relevant piece of a comment) Comments also come with IP numbers attached so you know which anonymous person made the comment (and where I am that matters) - other than that I do not find it user friendly, and Blogger is.

I agree with allens...
Keep Blogger, drop Obama.

bill said...

To counter some of what Palladian said...

Blogger is a terrible piece of software ...Subjective, depends on the intent

that give you almost no control over your site...this can be a feature, not a bug. Active user control can mean more work, leading to less writing. Crappy software that does 90% of what you need may be better than elegant software that does 50% of what you want.

and makes the experience of reading and leaving comments unpleasant for your readers. ...that's a you problem. Not necessarily the author's concern.

Now that you routinely receive over 200 comments on many posts, ...yeah, blogger doesn't deal well with those. Nested commenting would be nice after a certain level, but that equals more upkeep and work.

I would again suggest you reconsider your obstinate refusal to make your good website better. ..Define better? And for whom? Currently, it's nice and simple -- posts flow down new to old, click comments to view comments from new to old, there's clickable crap in the righ column. I prefer comments to open in a separate window -- a blogger option -- but that's not necessarily better.

Aesthetics matter. ...yes, but it isn't everything

Ease of use matters. ...Blogger is extremely easy to use, for the author and the reader. AS long as you don't want to do anything fancy.

Efficiency matters. For most authors, Blogger is extremely efficient: click-type-publish.

Scalability matters. maybe, it depends.

Blogger provides none of them. ...Simple to use, simple to publish, simple to read. It is what it is and for the right user it is extremely efficient.

Jim Hu said...

I think you should leave Blogger and code your own blogging package by learning to be a real programmer. And the comments section should be based on emacs.

;)

blake said...

Leaving Blogger doesn't mean going to Wordpress, necessarily.

I use Blogger because it's easy. Not just to add stuff, but to use common tools like sitemeter, et al.

Now, I'd probably drop it in a second for a site that made linking and picture embedding quicker.

But that's about it.

Beldar said...

Blogger is AWFUL, and it makes your site look amateurish.

I've used TypePad since 2003, and have never regretted it for a single day. It's every bit as user-friendly (for both blogger and readers) as Blogger, and vastly more flexible and powerful if you're so inclined.

Plus, it has the very best customer service I've ever seen -- consistently astonishingly good customer service.

It's not free, but it's dirt cheap. But TANSTAAFL -- you're paying for Blogger in ways you may not immediately appreciate.

Methadras said...

The comment system of Blogger alone is the largest detriment for using the software. However, it's free and you learn to deal with these issues. For how long is up to you.

Pundit Joe said...

Was deputydog hosting his own wordpress server? I thought about doing that, but if I hosted the site then I would have patch it, maintain security, and pay money. Sounded like a pain so I went with Blogger as it was free and for another reason(which escapes me at the moment) lol

Still, the Blogger problems do worry me a bit, but I'm not terribly concerned as my site is mostly for my own enjoyment and I get very few comments. Should that ever change, I will probably move to a more robust platform.

mcg said...

Ms. Topsy-Turvy, and all the rest of the lazy commentariat: If you expect me to read something you have in mind, YOU do the damn work so I can read it easily!

If you highlight a "bare" URL and right-click on a Mac running Safari, you get a menu that offers:
--- Go To Address
--- Go To Address in New Window
--- Go To Address in New Tab
No, it's not quite as easy as a single click but it's far easier than cut and paste.

Windbag said...

I don't blog anymore. I type out out pithy insights in a Word document, print them out, and keep a stash handy in the car. That way, when the mood strikes, and I'm near a church, I can nail them to the front door. So far, it's been working pretty well. I get more responses than I ever did blogging on the Internet.

Freeman Hunt said...

I agree with Ann about Blogger. When I was blogging regularly, I started to set things up to transition to Moveable Type. Moveable Type is a very nice piece of software. I decided to put off the move indefinitely when I realized that I had had my fill of dealing with hosting issues, technical site issues, and layout issues when I worked in marketing. Blogger is pretty much, aside from occasional short outages, hassle free. (And when they have outages, I don't have to get on the phone to track down the host's technical people, Google does.)

For simplicity and immediate usability, Blogger is king.

Theo Boehm said...

Ah, but mcg, some of us are not near a Macintosh ALL the time ;-)

Theo Boehm said...

Actually, I just installed Safari for Windows on my new computer at work. I switched to Safari, and, yes, it does the "Go to Address" thing.
Cool.
Another reason not to lug my MacBook to work.
I still think you're lazy if you don't provide a live link.

Joan said...

TANSTAAFL -- you're paying for Blogger in ways you may not immediately appreciate.

(sigh) I love you, Beldar. (You know, in that platonic, shared-interests, intarwebby way) It's not every day you run across such an apropros Heinlein reference.

Ann's post displays one of the common fallacies -- the false dichotomy? WordPress sucking more than Blogger is not a justification for Blogger's suckiness. There are other platforms that are used with much success by many bloggers out there.

I'll stick with Blogger. It's adequate for the infrequent, low-traffic blogging I do.

michael o. allen said...

Ann:

I don't want you to leave blogger but I do want you to run your site on your own domain name (which I hope you had the good sense to purchase) instead of blogspot.

It was a revelation to me when I found out you could do that and still remain on blogger. I disagree with the post you sent us to. While it is more challenging, I have been able to design my site the way I would like it on WordPress.

Anyway, Ann, you frustrate me in so many ways.

John Burgess said...

I first started blogging on Blogger. That sucked very hard over a six-month period, so I went to TypePad for a year or so.

I went to WordPress about five years ago and haven't looked back. I've a decent host who has helped with a couple of little hiccups (none fatal, only aesthetic) and am quite happy with the way it works.

For the financially challenged, WordPress also has a version hosted (for free) on WordPress servers so you don't have to pony up for your own host.

John Burgess said...

I first started blogging on Blogger. That sucked very hard over a six-month period, so I went to TypePad for a year or so.

I went to WordPress about five years ago and haven't looked back. I've a decent host who has helped with a couple of little hiccups (none fatal, only aesthetic) and am quite happy with the way it works.

For the financially challenged, WordPress also has a version hosted (for free) on WordPress servers so you don't have to pony up for your own host.

Audities said...

None have commented of the most terrible truth - that Deputy Dog was offline for weeks! My god man, this is dancing about Architecture!!

- Bones

Eli Blake said...

I've said it before and I will say it again:

Blogger is a FREE service, provided by the good folks at google for FREE.

I've had my problems before with blogger too but on the whole it's worked well, and since it is FREE I really have nothing to complain about. You know, you get what you pay for.

I've noticed that it is usually conservatives who complain about the FREE blogger service the most-- you know, the folks who think they can get something for nothing (i.e. the ones who favor cutting taxes but then complain the loudest when trash pickup goes from every week to every other week.)

238912398n32n49823b said...

It's fine to use Blogger. But you should own your own domain. You can do that and point the DNS to Blogger and Goggle will take care of the rest. There are no upgrades or maintenance you need to do to a DNS record, so just tell the registrar to do it and it's done forever.

I use Gmail/Google Apps for our company's domain's e-mail, and to the outside world nobody knows. Same thing. DNS pointing to Google per their instructions.

Of course, you've lost your domain and will have to pony up, oh, I'd say $2,000 or so to get it back from the squatter.

AllenS said...

The absolute worse thing about Blogger is when you get to the comment section and everybodys name is in lower case. I can't stand being called allens. How difficult would it be for Blogger to change their format to include CAPITAL LETTERS! Sorry for yelling.

Simon said...

Eli Blake said...
"I've said it before and I will say it again: Blogger is a FREE service...."

It's only "free" in monetary terms. That doesn't mean that it doesn't have costs.

Rick Lee said...

It's amazing how much better Blogger is now than it was before Google. It used to be that the only reason to go with Blogger was that it was free and it was easy to set up. Now, there are so many more formatting options and it's incredibly reliable. Oh, how I remember the lockups trying to upload photos in the old days. The templates keep most people from making a mess of the graphic design too. As a design professional, I know that most people have NO BUSINESS screwing around with the design of their sites. Ann and I both use the "Minima" template with few changes. It's clean and professional looking out of the box.

Pundit Joe said...

Eli Blake said...
"I've noticed that it is usually conservatives who complain about the FREE blogger service the most-- you know, the folks who think they can get something for nothing (i.e. the ones who favor cutting taxes but then complain the loudest when trash pickup goes from every week to every other week.)"


Eli, not everything has to involve politics. lol :) But, to each his own I suppose.