Thursday 10 February 2011

Good Points

While waiting for things to happen in Egg Wiped, and considering a follow-up blog entry after a comment I received, and before having a turn of attention to look at and deposit some music ahead of a church microphone swap tomorrow, I'll respond to a list of Lesley Fellows's Tip Ton Teps about blogging.

Actually, as regards dyslexia, the recommendation I received in teaching was to alternative lines of text in different contrasting strong colours. The problem is that blogs appear differently according to screen resolutions, and without absolute fixed lines (they never work) you can't alternate line colours. The best is to break things up, so to use different colours for different functions. Blue can introduce. I use a mainly darker green on creme but then a darker red for accurate quotes and a darker orange for 'as if' quotes. I employ white space and paragraphs. Sometimes a blog entry is long but it needs breaking up.

Small fonts are a pain because computer screens come in a mid range area for the over 45s between long distance spectacles and reading spectacles. Indeed, I use my first reading spectacles that are now mid-range and around the house. I try to use italics and bold sparingly and for purpose.

Images are useful in themselves and for breaking up the writing. White space helps and so does regularity. Using blockquotes involves reducing the gap below the blockquotes.

Any quote or source should be linked as an alternative to a proper reference and bibliography. These actually can be passive but, yes, some links need a rapid summary for the why and where. The usual rule is to let evidence stand for itself elsewhere.

Funny is good and so is a sense of danger sometimes. Thus my cartooning, which is more than just as attempt to get a likeness. Add that danger to personal cost, all you who have something to lose.

Why the author might care, or why it matters should be in the piece itself but I would say that sometimes allusion and not in your face is to engage the intelligence of the reader.

Occasionally, like with the Dublin Anglican Primates' press conference, a rapid rant is appropriate. Most of the time the calmer approach should be to allow the reader to take their own view: however, a blog carries a stance. This one is liberal religious pluralism and religious humanism.

There is an overlap between a blog and a sermon. A sermon should not preach at either. It should take a stance but recognise and draw in the congregation. All are welcome in my church but there is a constituency.

No problem about quoting the Bible from me, but there are times when a blog entry is about a book.

In addition to all these, I use a text editor before I edit on the blog space, but I often edit several times even after publication (even after using the preview). You miss things so often, but it is like a critical window.

Most of the time my blog images are intended for the blog, and are created on the computer. It is actually a lot easier - put the ear in the wrong place and one application will be able to move it. My main drawing program can reuse and reuse too.

Images to the left or to the right set at medium allow wrap-around text and help the variety of layout. Only when an image should be large should it be centred. All images can be clicked on for full size. I also put open and closed blockquotes top and bottom to leave a gap top and bottom.

I make all content available. I use free stuff so people can use my stuff. I see it all over the place and just accept it, though I don't understand why some people don't click through and get it full size first. I don't actually care if you alter it.

The worst blogs are those where you have to 'choose an account' because I cannot comment on those. Also I hate pointless widgets like 'Welcome to my blog' as these are just a nuisance. I hate the bar that pops up from below that needs pushing down, for a little one to come up. Least is best, that's what I say.

I know that some people repeat what others have shown, but I really follow the principle of original content. If you've already shown it, what is the point of me showing it? I want to say something original or at the least come from my perspective about it.


June Butler said...

Adrian, you make good points on blogging. I follow some of your suggestions, but not others, but I will keep them in mind.

I repeat what's already posted because, in my head, I have a target local audience who may not read what's been posted elsewhere.

The busier a blog, the more difficult I find it to read and to pay attention. A friend says I have ADD, and I think she's right.

At the present time, I have an old computer, and the more stuff, extras and such, on a blog, the longer the pages take to load.

Pluralist (Adrian Worsfold) said...

I think we all have a constituency, or a few overlapping ones, but both of those (if I identify two) repeat material so I'm not going to repeat it. Very often I ignore videos just repeated from elsewhere. And I don't like clutter that slows a blog down or detracts from what is written.