Wednesday, December 9, 2009

How to Use This Blog --for Boomers who want to know

First let me apologize for my silence these last few days. I've been waylaid by a sinus infection and spent much of the time sleeping rather than blogging. However, I'm back and hope to be a more regular contributor now.

This blog post is about How to Use This Blog, with some comments about how to use blogs in general. I know that many people my age don't understand this relatively new method of communications and feel stupid asking people about it. Yes, they've heard about blogs, and maybe they know what one is, but they are at a loss to find blogs they might enjoy reading.

One of my friends, who is very knowledgeable about the web, has simply ignored blogs because she didn't understand them. However, she was interested enough in my topic of Tech and the Baby Boomer to ask me how to find my blog. After she read it, however, she didn't understand how to interact with it. And she couldn't find it again the next time she looked for it.  So here is a short primer on how to read and interact with this blog.

You can find my blog at  But you can also find it through certain search engines. If you Google my name "Esther Surden" my blog listing in Blog Catalog will be among the first items you'll see.  A direct search result for this blog will be lower in this list.  If you click on this link, either from the search engine or from Blog Catalog, your browser will go to the this Blog's home page.

Since my blog is still a little hard to find on search engines, I'd suggest that people who come here, bookmark this page so they can come back. Just click on the tab at the top of your page that says "Bookmark" or "Favorites." That will allow you to save the Blog's home page as a place to come back to.

Let's say you've landed on my home page, now what? You'll see my latest blog entry on top. Blogs are like a diary, written with the last entry on top. You can read just one entry, or scroll through and read more. I hope you'll want to read more.

After you've read what I have to say, please comment. The comment section is after the post. To comment, just hit the link under the post that tells how many comments there are for a post. It will open the posted comments section and lead you to a box labeled "Post a Comment". Write what you like in the white box below.

In my blog, you won't be published right away. I monitor the comments to prevent spam. Under the comment window you'll see a  box that says "Comment As" and you'll have several options. You can use your AIM user name, your Google user name, or a name with a URL. You can also be anonymous.  Once you've decided how you want to be listed, click the preview button to preview your comments. Once you are satisfied with your comment, click the Submit button. After you submit the comment, I will get the comment from Blogger, look at it, and post it.

Of course there are other things you can do with my blog.
  • You can email blog entries to other people by clicking the little envelope under the post.
  • You can look up related content, by clicking on the Sphere icon that looks like a miniature globe. Sphere provides links to stories or other content that is similar to the content in my post. You'll have to deal with some ads if you click this link, however.
  • You can subscribe to my post via email, through the form in the right hand column. 
  • You can get my blog posts and comments sent to your home page through something called an RSS feed. (I'll be dealing with this in a future post)
  • You can Follow my blog posts through Google Friend Connect, if you want to join that program. (I'll also touch on this in a future post)
  • You can Tweet the post or share it on Facebook, if you want to.

Feel free to use my blog as your guinea pig --a place you can experiment with your skills at commenting or sharing. In another post, I'll talk about using some of the larger and well respected blog sites. Getting to know them can enrich your life.

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