Introduction to Blogging - dummies

By Amy Lupold Bair, Susannah Gardner

One reason for so many blogs is the ease with which they can be set up and published. The early days of the Internet were full of heady talk about the democratization of publishing; people discussed how absolutely anyone would have the power to publish because of the prevalence of personal computers.

In fact, that idea wasn’t strictly true. Writers no longer needed a printing press and a distribution method to get their work to people, but they still needed specialized skills and technology.

Unless the wannabe publisher spent time figuring out how to write HTML, owned a computer that had an Internet connection, and understood how to put files onto a web server, he or she was still pretty much in the old can’t-get-published boat. You could acquire those skills and the tools to publish, but you couldn’t do so easily.

The answer, as it turns out, comes down to technology — specifically, software. Blogging goes a long way toward making that initial promise of the web come true. If you can write an e-mail, you can figure out how to use the simple interfaces of blogging software without any of the muss of dealing with HTML, FTP, or any of those other awful web acronyms everyone’s supposed to understand these days.

Let’s explore the publishing interface of Blogger, a great blogging software tool. To write a new post, you simply log into Blogger, fill in the blanks for a new post, and click the Publish button to put the entry on your blog.

Blogger's publishing interface.

Different blog software offers different feature sets. As with all software, the tricky part is finding the right one to use for your situation and needs. Rest assured, however, that blogging software comes in all shapes, sizes, and price ranges.