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Tools and Technology #1: What tools do you use to publish your blog?

Write a review or guide to the blogging software that you use to manage your site. Other participants will be able to use these answers as a resource to identifying suitable tools for their blogging practice.

Information to consider including in your review:

  • Price
  • Hosted service or on your own domain
  • Setup difficulty
  • FAvourite features
  • Missing Features
  • Have you used other services?

How to respond to this task

Write your tool review in the comments below or share a link to your response in your own blog.

Task Discussion

  • Lynn Cook   June 12, 2011, 1:55 a.m.

    I'm currently using WordPress, two free blogs through, and one that I've set up on my own website.

    I was blogging with Blogger but left for a couple of reasons: 1. there were some service outages just when I was getting enthusiastic about writing some posts and 2. WordPress has a nifty iPad app which allows you to use a very minimal dashboard to write and edit posts and comments as well as see your stats.

    I found the WordPress blogs very easy to set up but a bit confusing to use partly because there is just so, SO much you can do with it. So I'm still very much in the learning stages. Blogger is much easier to use because everything is laid out in a very basic way, you can customise it if you want to but that's not obvious straight up.

    Favourite WordPress features are the app and the Learn WordPress pages.

    Least favourite aspect is struggling with adding images and galleries ... I have managed to do it but it's not looking very good. I've really got to spend some time sorting it out.

    Actually the hardest thing about setting up on either system is finding a blog name that's still available. Took me ages!

  • Jessica Ledbetter   June 1, 2011, 5:04 p.m.


    I use WordPress for both the personal and professional blogs.


    Free! Well, is free but I do pay around $150 a year for the host that is on, plus about $9 a year for the domain.

    Setup difficulty

    Easy as pie. Though, pie isn't so easy to make especially if from scratch. On my host, there's a one-click install though there wasn't always. And WordPress has made it so simple to install that even if there was no one-click install, it's still very easy.

    Favourite features

    I like the customizability of it and how simple it is. I have created quite a few WordPress themes for clients and myself. I can make a simple CMS for them so that they can maintain their content easily and it's free. I like that I can have a blog as well as portfolio all with the same code. I even have a static home page that is part of it. It makes maintainability so much easier to have one spot for the theme. There's a big community as well so that if I want to hack up the code there are probably people that have done something similar or people that I can ask questions of.

    Missing Features

    Great thing about it is that it's easy to make features that are missing :) For example, I'm coding up another redesign that has portfolio pages and they're going to be like posts.

    Have you used other services?

    Yes. I've used LiveJournal, Blogger, and some solutions that aren't hosted like Expression Engine. I've also used and themed Drupal and Joomla.

  • Laura Hilliger   May 25, 2011, 5:37 a.m.


  is powered by Wordpress, and I have to say, I really love Wordpress. I've never been just a blogger, so I'm always interested in what different CMS systems can offer. Wordpress used to be just a blogging software, but so many talented developers have taken it upon themselves to make Wordpress a fully fledged CMS and I appreciate that. Wordpress is free, it's easy to use, even if you aren't a developer and it allows the sort of customization that someone serious about working online needs.

    I bought the Zythepsary domain name and have it hosted on a server that contains a couple of other sites. It's not the best hoster in the world, but I've been using Start Logic for a number of years and am simply too lazy to switch over to something else. Well, it's not laziness, I just don't have a reason to make the change. Until someone says “This or that hoster is the best in the world” and writes a blog post, that makes sense to me, about why, I'll just pay my fees at my hoster.

    Wordpress is super easy to install and setup. But I'm a webist, a designer, a developer, so the setup difficulty is relative. It's popular enough that almost all hosters have an installation feature for the software. And if you don't have a server somewhere, you can use the Wordpress site to host a domain.

    I have a lot of favorites when it comes to Wordpress. In the end, if you need a plugin for something, it's probably been developed, and if that plugin doesn't do exactly what I want, I have the necessary skills to modify it.

    The one missing feature, from my perspective, is automatic discovery of changed files during update. If you make the mistake of not making a child theme, the next time you update, you better hope you have your styles backed up because updating your theme will overwrite any changes that you've made. The same goes for the standard Wordpress files. If you've gone into the PHP and changed anything, updating Wordpress will become a chore in which you have to remember exactly what you changed and where. I highly recommend making regular backups to your site.

    I've tried Blogger in the past, but it was a while ago. I also have a couple of sites running on other CMS's. But for my blogging needs, and for Zythepsary, Wordpress is the way to go.