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Blog Exercises: Ingredients of a Professional Site

Two questions on the same day triggered this blog exercise. I was asked by a student in my WordPress class recently what defined a “professional blog.” I told him it was one that met all the criteria for a well-designed, well-formed site that met web standards. This is a good definition, but lacked specifics. A […]

Blog Exercises: Trust the Crowds

In an October issue of “Science News,” an article on the “Deep Network” monitoring of the sea floor, reported on how the general public may monitor the sea floor through the Neptune system of underwater microphones and web cams through LIDO (Listening to the Deep Ocean) (requires Flash). New discoveries have been made by citizens […]

Blog Exercises: Bye Bye to Dumb Drafts

Demian Farnworth of Copyblogger wrote a brilliant article, “5 1/2 Reasons You Should Kill a Draft Blog Post. It’s today’s blog exercise. In summary, Demian’s tips are: The idea sounds bad to you days later. It’s likely to create controversy you don’t want. It looks like something you wrote last year. It looks like stolen […]

Blog Exercises: Trending

In social media, trending are topics attracting the attention of most of the people in that moment. Unfortunately, trending topics are self-feeding. If something ends up top of the trending list, it becomes an accident alongside the highway. Everyone wants to slow down and take a look. Walking by a student glued to their computer, […]

Blog Exercises: 5,127 Tries

In his native UK, Sir James Dyson is known as much for his quirky looking, superior-functioning vacuum cleaners as for his long embattled path to commercial success. He gave Brits their first bagless vacuum in 1993 after 13 tough years tinkering in the tool shed. He slogged through 5,127 prototypes, a couple of lawsuits and […]

Blog Exercises: The Outsider

During a writer’s convention this weekend, someone familiar with my site and these Blog Exercises asked me why I was handing our all this information to help others blog better, use WordPress better, and migrate their site from personal to professional. I had a pat answer then, but today, I have another. …Assumptions like these […]

Blog Exercises: Don’t Let Your Content Compete With Itself

I fear for what I’m about to say. Colored fonts are evil. I’m not talking about colored fonts in the website design, nor colored fonts in headings within your content. I’m talking about colorizing the words you are reading as you read, just because, and the because usually isn’t a good enough reason to make […]

Blog Exercises: What’s the View Through Your Binoculars

One of my favorite things is a framed picture by Matt Mullenweg of an old set of mounted binoculars. The eye pieces are worn and the blue paint on the metal binoculars looks like it’s not the first coat of paint it has seen. It’s wonderful, and I find new meaning in it every time […]

Blog Exercises: How to Tag Posts – The Quiz

In “Blog Exercises: How to Tag Posts,” I covered the basics of how to tag your posts. The following blog exercise is a quiz to see how you would tag the following post. Read through the article on tagging posts for a review. Read the following fictional short story I wrote called “The Story of […]

Blog Exercises: Self-Sabotage Writing

You probably don’t want to hear this…I’m sure you don’t care what I have to say anyway…if you aren’t interested, go somewhere else…if you are here to learn something stick around, if not, take a hike…I don’t expect you to figure this out…This does require some intelligence to understand, so if you can’t be bothered, […]

Blog Exercises: Judging a Book By Its Presence

Right after the Sandy Hook School attack, a detail about the killer’s life came out in the news in the form of the book choices found in the home of the killer and his mother. Among all the books and papers was found a book on autism and another on Aspergers, which the media took, […]

Blog Exercises: Blog Work Flows

In “A Sample Blogging Workflow” by my friend, Chris Brogan, he talks about the process of blogging with consistency and determination in mind. Your company has decided to launch a blog, and you’re the lucky blogger. Maybe you’ve even asked for this pleasure, suggested it to the boss yourself. Only now, you have to deliver, […]

Blog Exercises: Awesome by Association

In “Two WordPress.com Experts and One Series of Blog Work,” Kinna Reads featured myself and my friend, timethief of one cool site (lowercase intentional). I’m honored and grateful, but more importantly, I’m awesome by association. My friend, timethief, started blogging in 2005. When she switched to WordPress.com, her life changed as did mine and hundreds […]

Blog Exercises: The IKEA Effect for Bloggers

The Ikea Effect was coined by researchers who found out what we all know but rarely admit, we put too much ownership into our own brainchild ideas and concepts. In other words, we tend to fall in love with our own ideas and creations. If you have ever been around kids, you’ve probably had that […]

Blog Exercises: Does Your Site Look Spammy?

Does your site look spammy? How would you know whether or not your site looks spammy? It’s time for a spam check. Web design is hard, especially if you aren’t an expert. Yet, in many ways you are an expert if you are a fan of the web. You’ve seen enough sites to know the […]

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