Thursday, June 18, 2009

Several Questions for the Hive Mind

This blog has had the same design (decent, but perhaps a bit boring) since it started, but I've been thinking about various kinds of overhauls. Since everything in this bright and shiny 21st century, I've been reliably informed, will be entirely free, online, and crowdsourced, I figured I'd throw out my half-formed thoughts and see if any of you have any ideas/experience/suggestions to share.

1) I'm thinking about getting a dedicated URL for this blog. What registrars have you folks used? Any problems with any of them? How complicated is it to register a URL with one company and then have someone else host the actual site?

2) I've also thought about moving to another blogging platform, possibly TypePad. (I don't have a server cabinet of my own, and I'm not really interested in doing my own hosting, so I think WordPress and MovableType are out of the running.) Anyone have any experience there? Or are there places I can find a wider variety of templates for Blogger? (I've wanted to go to a three-column layout for a long time now.)

3) What about Google AdSense? No big deal or horribly intrusive and always untargeted? (I've avoided them because I find them ugly and I expected I'd only get about a nickle a month, but I've been tempted lately for other reasons.)

Please also feel free to use this as an excuse to tell me What the Hell Is Wrong With This Blog (besides my opinions, which aren't likely to change much with a redesign).


Michael A. Burstein said...

Some interesting questions.

I use for my main host, but my blog is a permanent account on LiveJournal, so I can't really speak to your first question. I do think a dedicated URL is the best idea if you can do it.

You can use wordpress without doing your own hosting, by the way.

Google AdSense - well, the only question here is how willing you are to give them control over the ads people see when they visit your blog.

FS said...

I've been very pleased with Typepad, for what that's worth.

Cheryl said...

With a reputable registrar there should be no problem where the blog is hosted.

Michael's right, you can get a blog on without having to host the site yourself.

You need Scalzi levels of readership to make any money from AdSense.

Anonymous said...

2. If you move to LiveJournal or Dreamwidth, it would be easier for me to track comments and you would be able to use cut tags so your entries don't overwhelm to friends list.[/selfish]

3. I AdBlock pretty much everything I can.

Anonymous said...

I read your posts in my RSS reader and only ever open the actual Web page when I want to comment (or see what other people have commented). So long as that still works, I have no opinion on your choice of platform.

Unknown said...

1. GoDaddy has been good to me, to be honest. Quick and easy, and usually well-priced.
As for the host: I use slhost for We've had three instances of downtime that had nothing to do with the host, and everything to do with buggy code. I can't even remember the last time we were down for scheduled maintenance. They must do it super quick or at a time that never hinders me.

2. Wordpress is probably your best bet. Free and plenty of free templates. Otherwise stick with Blogger, but if you're wanting easier functionality in your templates, then WP is the way to go (I still use blogger, though, but will switch one day).

3. Rarely useful. I've had nothing but bad experiences with it, especially since I blog about lit-based topics, which for some reason throws Adsense off. You'd be better trying to do targeted adverts via text link or Project Wonderful (or wherever you can find such things). Unless you don't care if your ads are way off at times.

Martin Wisse said...

I use for hosting, which is 8 dollars a month for what they say is unlimited bandwidth/server space. You get a free domain name when you register with them, or you can use a third party. What's more they have a range of press button blog installations available, including wordpress.

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