Friday, August 26, 2005

Baby steps on the 'net

Ah, very cool. Blogger, evidently, has been up late the last few nights making changes to their little blogging universe. Not exactly the path I would have taken on every issue, but these changes are at least steps in the right direction.

The First: I don’t know about the rest of you, but I typically write my posts out in Word before I copy and paste them into the Blogger editor. If the Almighty Gates had expected us to know how to spell correctly, He wouldn’t have given us spell-check. (Of course, that doesn’t help when you confuse “review” and “revue”, but that’s what the Almighty Hoffmann is for.) Also, soon after I started here at the RT, I saw how easily the rug could be pulled out from underneath these flimsy weblogs, so now I save each of my posts to a folder on my desktop, just to be safe. The kids over at Blogger, though, have made that transition a touch easier with this new add-on, which lets me post directly from Word. Not a big improvement, but I’ll take anything I can get.

The Second: Okay, this one I’m not too keen on, but again, this is a tough area. We’re still in the wild wild west of security on the internets, so sometimes you have to keep an eye out for yourself and not rely on the e-police to catch every criminal. If you own a connected computer, you need to update and run a virus catcher. If you make purchases online, you need to check out the site you’re giving your card # to. If you have an email account, you need to either ignore the Nigerian scam-emails, or laugh at websites like this, or both. And until the powers that be perfect their comment function, if you have a blog, you have to deal with those assholes who leave spam on your site.

In the meantime, Blogger has this to say about the subject. Essentially, their answer is to make it harder for everyone to leave comments, which I’m not going to buy into just yet. Again, I think it’s a step in the right direction – I’m definitely glad they’re aware of it all, but I’m not going to make sure you know how to type “uvama” before you can make fun of me on my own website. For those of you who have blogs, and I assume that's the lion's share of my readership, set up your comments so that you're emailed each time someone chimes in. Then delete the spamments.

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