How to Blog

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A brief presentation on How to Blog presented for the Ontogenesis "Blogging a Book" workshop

A brief presentation on How to Blog presented for the Ontogenesis "Blogging a Book" workshop

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  • 1. How to blog Ontogenesis: blogging a book Dr. Duncan Hull, Software engineer, EBI Chemoinformatics and Metabolism
  • 2. What is a blog? Ontogenesis 05.02.10 A blog (a contraction of “ web log ”) is a type of website, usually maintained by an individual with regular entries of commentary, descriptions of events. Entries are commonly displayed in reverse- chronological order . http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Blog
  • 3. c.f. Scientific Journal and Book publishing
    • Frequently / regularly updated – never “finished”?
    • Feeds: (a) Subscription and (b) Syndication
    • Post publication “peer - review”
    • Accessible statistics
    • Personal and/or Informal
    Ontogenesis 05.02.10 Picture by Julian Cash http://www.flickr.com/photos/9494134@N05/752021495/
  • 4. 1. Regular / frequent updates
    • Most blogs are constantly updated
      • anything from many times per day to once every few months
      • Frequency / regularity determined by author(s) (not publishers)
    • Frequency can be very low e.g. Tim Berners-Lee http://dig.csail.mit.edu/breadcrumbs/blog/4
    • … Last updated 27 th March 2008 …
    Ontogenesis 05.02.10
  • 5. 2. This works because of Feeds Ontogenesis 05.02.10
    • How many know what a feed is?
    • How many use a feed reader?
    RSS ATOM Allows a) subscription and b) syndication
  • 6. For example…http://knowledgeblog.org Ontogenesis 05.02.10 This site is available as a feed
  • 7. e.g. In http://www.google.com/reader Ontogenesis 05.02.10 subscribe
  • 8. 2. (a) Subscribers are notified of updates Ontogenesis 05.02.10 Notification of update e.g. like email / subscribing to a Table of Contents of a journal
  • 9. 2. (b) Feeds also allow Syndication
    • Data can easily and automatically be re-used elsewhere
    • E.g. blogs.nature.com and researchblogging.org (hundreds / thousands of authors)
    Ontogenesis 05.02.10
  • 10. 3. Peer-review (sort of)
    • Rather than being peer-reviewed before publication, blogs are typically peer-reviewed after publication (if at all)
    • This is done by
      • Comments
      • Linkbacks
    Ontogenesis 05.02.10 Automatically inform author(s) when another site has linked to theirs
  • 11. 4. Accessible statistics
    • Most viewed (popularity)
    • Referrals (where web traffic is coming from)
    • Clicks (what links are being followed)
    • Search engine terms (what keywords used to find blog)
    Ontogenesis 05.02.10
  • 12. 5. Personal / Informal Style
    • Many blogs are written from a personal point of view, like a diary or laboratory notebook
      • Informal, first person singular:
        • E.g. “ Fred Bloggs told me that x was a big load of … ”
    Ontogenesis 05.02.10
      • Formal, third person, scientific style ”
        • E.g. “ Bloggs et al (2009) suggest that x is flawed …”
  • 13. How to blog
    • We are using WordPress, which comes in two flavours:
    • Wordpress.com : Hosted e.g. http://rbaltman.wordpress.com/
    • Russ Altman, Stanford
    • Wordpress.org: Self–hosted e.g. http://blogs.bbsrc.ac.uk Douglas Kell, BBSRC
    Ontogenesis 05.02.10
  • 14. How to blog with wordpress
    • Either login to knowledgeblog.org
      • Write while logged in
      • save as draft
    • Or write chapters the usual way
      • login then cut-and paste
    Ontogenesis 05.02.10
  • 15. Once logged in you’ll see this Ontogenesis 05.02.10
  • 16. Acknowledgements
    • Robert Stevens
    • Phil Lord
    • Christoph Steinbeck (EBI)
    Ontogenesis 05.02.10
  • 17. Happy blogging, any questions? Ontogenesis 05.02.10