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Friday, January 14, 2005

Blogging Terms & Tools - An Ah Soh's View

I am a self-confessed Ah Soh Blogaholic. New at Blogospere or Blogland, I am always excited to learn anything new about blogging. Here is my view about blogging but before I go on to give my "Ah Soh's" view on Blogging and Blogging Tools I must give a little history about how I started blogging.

It all started with breastfeeding. Haha. Thats true. I had a very difficult time breastfeeding my two babies. It was the hardest thing I had to do in my life but I am very glad that I perservered to give my babies the best milk. Having gone through such a hard time, I was motivated to write down my story to help support other moms who may have or are going through similar difficulties. I did not know where to start because I had no idea how to build a website, so I signed up with a blogger account, not knowing what it was all about. I just wanted to share my breastfeeding story.

I immediately started writing my story on blogger but soon after that I found Yahoo Geocities. I discovered that I could create a pretty website (*ahem* click here to visit Ah Soh's pretty website) from scratch without any knowledge of any html (using Yahoo's Pagebuilder which is very userfriendly) so I moved everything there and my blog died a natural death. After my website was up, I found out about MMB (MyMomsBest - Malaysia's breastfeeding and Parenting website with a heart) and wrote to them to see if they could put my link there. Twinsmom, one of MMB's site administrators wrote back and suggested that I joined the MMB forum. I did not know they had one. I am very glad I did. My only regret (if you can call it that) is that I did not know about MMB when I was struggling to breastfeed my babies.

Anyway MMB is the most wonderful parenting forum for local mummies. Its like a Malaysian open house. The mums there are very wonderful and supportive and apart from breastfeeding, we talk about every other childcare issue you can think of, we share recipes and grumble about our men sometimes. He he. There are some wonderful dads there too.

After one or two months at MMB, 5XMom (owner of the MMB website) and twinsmom started talking about blogging. I read their blogs and saw the fun they were having and my blog was born again. :-)

Wow, long history. MG is long winded as usual. Anyway, here is my understanding of some blogging terms and tools:

Blog, the word.
Merriam-Webster Online says: "Based on your online lookups, the #1 Word of the Year for 2004 was Blog."

Ah Soh says: Wah, this Ah Soh not bad. Very in, hip and happening!

Blog Survey
According to the Pew Internet & American Life Project survey: "By the end of 2004 blogs had established themselves as a key part of online culture: 7% of U.S. internet users say they have created blogs and 27% say they are blog readers." Read more here.

Ah Soh says: Wah! So few. That means not bad man this Ah Soh. I wonder what the numbers are like in Malaysia.

Petaling Steet Project (PPS) "is a "blogtal": a blog portal. In itself, it isn't a blog, but it acts as a portal that aggregates (i.e. mengumpulkan or brings together) the freshest and latest content from a cross-section of Malaysian made, Malaysian maintained blogs."

Ah Soh says: Malaysia boleh!

Google's Blogger says "The blogging experience is about not only putting your thoughts on the web, but hearing back from and connecting with other like-minded folks."

Ah Soh: Hmm.. So many bloggers using Haloscan commenting service. Must be something about it. Lets try it out. Oh I see, at least now I can see who my commentors are instead of the numerous Anons (Anonymous). Wah can personalise the look as well. Must make it green green to match my blog template. After signing up for Haloscan. Boo Hoo Hoo, my old comments all disappeared! And what on earth is this trackback? Nevermind, one day I will learn.

Papi gave a very good step by step instruction on how to make use of trackback. Thanks Papi for sharing. Now Ah Soh can have more fun.

Ah Soh says: So cute wan. Like going to a friend's house to invite them over to your house. If very kiasu dat time, when own house got no guest, can go to someone with full house to invite some of their guests over! (Can't believe I just said that. Now everyone will think I am trying to fish for comments everytime I use trackback. Hehe. But aren't we all. Comments is part of the fun in having a blog. The funnies put humour to my day and the others make me think)

Google's Blogger Help says "Tagboards are like little messages attached to your blog, where your readers can leave you notes. They differ from comments, which are attached to individual posts, in that you just have one tagboard for your whole site, and visitors can read the messages right on your homepage. It can be a good way to encourage interaction among your readers and create a sense of community on your blog." Read more here.

Ah Soh says: Wah Shiok man. Like having my own personal forum. Rather like a cross between an answering machine and an Instant Message. "Hello.... I'm not online right now but if you leave a message, I will get right back to you." Coooooolll!! Must have one. (On a more serious note its a useful tool to have for others to leave comments when they don't feel like commenting on any posts in particular).

Blogrolling "is a one-stop linklist manager for your blog or journal, helping you manage your ever-evolving linklist with ease. There are a lot of tools out there to help you blog without getting your hands dirty - but managing your linklist still means having to crawl through the HTML in your template every time you want to add or remove a link. No more! Now it's as simple as clicking a link or making a pit stop at BlogRolling. "

Ah Soh says: What the heck is this but gives it a whirl anyway (as they suggested). Its only later after Hazel of Apa-Apa-Je mentioned somewhere that you can put your bloglinks alphabetically that this Ah Soh discovered that its an easy way to add links to your sidebar alphabetically without messing up your template again and again.

Hit Counter and Statistics
Goggles Blogger Help says "Do you ever wonder how many people visit your blog, or where they come from? Well there are services you can install that can tell you all about the traffic on your site. They range from simple hit counters that just display a total number of visitors, to more advanced statistics services that can give you information about referrers, browsers, visiting times, and more." Blogger provides some links to a few free site trackers here.

Ah Soh says: Walaueh. The Statistics so cooolll. Can see which countries the visitors come from, which website, how often they visit etc. Must have. Must have. Hit Counter I think no need lah. Shylah if few hits.

Other tools Ah Soh uses:
Clocklink to remind herself not to blog for too long.
Moodsmilies - Love them.. those cute little emoticons.
HTML Basix Code Generators. (Ah Soh knows how to spell, thats just the name of the website) This is a fantastic page for those who do not know any html like Ah Soh here but wants to have some fun making their webpages look more *ahem* professional. Ah Soh put up the annoying moving scrollbar using the code generator as well as a drop down menu for her website because too many people complained difficult to enter her website to view the pages.

Note: Ah Soh is "Aunty" or Middle aged lady

P.S. Ah Soh is still learning. If you have any new tricks and tools, please share with Ah Soh ok? Thanks!!

1 comment:

  1. Haha....where do you get all these ideas for your post? This is amazingly clever. I must get my friend, Ilene to visit this post as she too is a novice like me. In fact, she just post her first blog today. I am enjoying this..


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