How to start blogging – attempt #2

Ah! my 2nd attempt to blogging.

I started to blog last year with lot of enthusiasm but that quickly fizzled out by the tool at my disposal for the effort it was taking bringing the site to where I wanted. Here is my earlier blog named one-enterprise. Finally I gave up. I was using Google blogger at the time.

Soon, I realized much of my struggle was with the knowledge I had about what is available on the Internet. I knew what I wanted but I picked up the blogging site based on what came first. I chose Goggle blogger as that came one of the first choice when I searched for blog sites. Blogger had nice and simple interface – hence I signed up and later realized I got stuck as it did not have tools/flexibility in what I was looking for. It took my momentum away first time. Later, I got involved with several things before generating enough momentum to take second stab at it.

This time around – I started with a set of requirement that I wanted and researched the right tool. This time – I am finding better handle on my blogging effort. Here are the requirements I laid out before signing up to a blogging site.

  1. Free of cost
  2. Easy to post a blog
  3. Easy to add a new page to the site where I can have my non-blog stuff
  4. Easy to “categorize” by blog posts and use existing “categories” where possible so that my posts also start to surface
  5. Easy to make blog searchable
  6. Easy to add photos and other media to a post and a site
  7. Allow me choices of template that I like – 2 side bars and main page
  8. Allow me to customize sidebars where I can include my choice of text, RSS feeds, Links, Counters, Search, Calendar, etc.
  9. Allow me to specify choices of summary or full view and other display choices
  10. Allow me to specify my blogroll
  11. Provide me dashboard with relevant information, hits, pings to know how my site is being used
  12. Easy to preview and tag
  13. Will allow upgrade to the product version when I decide to move my blog to my own domain – although I will have to pay for it.
  14. Essentially one place with a template that I like, where I can easily blog, post my non-blog stuff, RSS feeds, etc and know how the site is being used.

 After some search, I settled on WordPress. I considerd Typepad, Spaces, Blogger but so far I liked what WordPress had offered. Site allowed creation of my blog site quickly and I can configure it the way I like it. I enjoyed leveraging sidebar and putting bunch of information that I wanted. It is easy to use and got me where I wanted quickly.

Next, I also changed my RSS reader from “RSSReader” to NewsGator Online. This move turned out to be good as well. Again, I kept my criteria to keep it free for now. I consolidated all my RSS feeds – internal, external to Newsgator. Newsgator allow publishing blogroll as a Script. I am at a point where I am trying to bring my newsgator blogroll to show up at my WordPress blog.

With that said – here I am. The blog is ready and my Newsgator online feed is ready. I have consolidated much of the information that I used to fetch from various sites at one place.

I am hoping now someone will start better tagging/syndicate like-minded high quality blogs together. I still spend sometime figuring out which blog to subscribe or not. Hopefully a good syndicate network of blog can be the aggregator based on the topic and depending on the interest folks can just subscribe to those channels. Hopefully it will save people time who are trying to tune to reliable channels.

My next step – sometime, in future – would be to to bring my own domain and consolidate much of my web interaction at one place. Until then, this is where I leave my traces…

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About aloktyagi

After travelling the world and living in several places, Alok lives with his wife Alka and two daughters Ayushi and Mansi in Denver, Colorado. At work Alok is known to build software products and run engineering organizations - a life long passion.
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