Blogs and Blogging...
Seven months into writing Prairie Bluestem, I finally understand that del.icio.us offers an effective and flexible way of categorizing the individual posts of a blog. Since Blogger (the blogging service I use) doesn't offer categories, I'm excited about using del.icio.us.
Here's how it works. If I tag several posts as "Sandhills", a reader can click on that tag and see a list of all the posts so labeled. Also, any user of del.icio.us could search for "Sandhills" and possibly come across a post of mine with a "Sandhills" tag.
I wish I had grasped earlier in my blogging experience how del.icio.us works. I wouldn't have fooled around with the categories listed in the sidebar ("All in the Family", "Memory Lane", etc.) They use the Blogger Search, and they have two unfortunate limitations:
- They don't pick up any posts made before the searches were installed.
- They don't pick up any categories that are changed or added after a post is first published.
Neither of these problems will exist with del.icio.us tags.
I've started going through the posts from the beginning of the blog and putting some del.icio.us tags on them. Today I did January's 82 posts! Good grief, I posted too much that month!
When I get done tagging all the posts, I'll probably put a list of del.icio.us tags in the sidebar. Meanwhile, if you're curious, you can see the tags I've done so far at http://del.icio.us/prairiebluestem.
I've described just one way that a blogger can use del.icio.us . There are many, many other possible uses-- even networking features so you can send your tags to friends. No wonder it's such a popular service. I'm glad I finally understand at least the basics of how it works.
I know I'm a little slow, but bear in mind -- I'm just a silly little old lady.