I love gadgets. I love office supplies. I go crazy in kitchen supply stores. How many different bundt cake pans and muffin tins does one woman need, my husband wonders. I think this is why I am toying with so many different ways of doing the same thing online with my blogs and websites.
My rationalization for this behavior, of course, is that I like to test lots of online tools so that I can help my clients make better decisions about them. It makes it tougher for me to keep track of sometimes, but I like learning about the pros and cons of various options, and the best way to do that is to actually use them myself.
Take my blogrolls, for instance. “E-Courses and Tip Sheets” is in my WordPress template. “My Other Sites” and “Selected Clients” are generated from del.icio.us links. The rest of the blogroll (the links to other blogs) is generated by NewsGator, the RSS reader I use the most. On the Carnival of Nonprofit Consultants page, I use bloglines to manage the “Big Top” Blogroll. I also use Furl, but that doesn’t show up anywhere on this blog right now.
I also like playing with WordPress plugins. I’m experimenting with two new ones since I’ve updated this blog’s template: Democracy, the polling plugin, and Social Bookmarks, which places social bookmarking site icons at the bottom of each post, so you can save the ones you like.
I’m also experimenting with content management systems (CMS), but on a smaller scale. I manage my EcoScribe and NonprofitAnnualReports.net sites with regular ol’ HTML. I’m using WordPress as a CMS on NonprofitNewsletters.net and NewsletterWritingTips.com. Writing911.com currently uses Lore, but I’m in the middle of converting it to Joomla. I’d also like to try Drupal one day.
For the three blogs I write (this one, a personal one about my kids, and Writing for Nonprofits, which is for freelance writers), I’ve stuck with WordPress. I looked at several other platforms, but found WordPress to be the easiest to learn and most flexible for my various needs.
Got any opinions to share about these various tools or some to recommend I try?