Jeremy Smith's blog

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Blogging Engines: The Future of all Web Sites

Are Blogging Engines Like Typepad and MovableType the Future for all Web Pages?

Somewhat, I would say.

In talking with persons around campus in finding possible candidates for group blogs, I discovered that there are three (yes, 3) things that people do with their web pages that comprise 80% of all of their interactions with it (in terms of being creators/contributors to the web site / web page(s)).

  1. Add a parcel of content. For example, this and this, which were added to the College of Arts & Sciences web page.
  2. Adding a "highlight" or simple link to an event on a web page much like the "Highlights" section found, again, on the College of Arts & Sciences web page.
  3. Setting up a relatively static page with informational content that doesn't change that often; though, will undergo semi-annual updates such as these two pages — College of Arts & Sciences - About the College and College of Arts & Sciences - Departments and Programs.

Yep, that's it. That is what people do with their web pages 80% of the time (I should actually be saying 80+% of the time, because, really, it is probably more). So, what do you do with the use case(s) that land on the 80 side of the 80/20 rule; well, you make those as easy as possible. And, for numbers 1 and 2 of the above list, that's exactly what blogging was meant to make as easy as possible.

So, yes, I see, in some form or another, "blogging tools" being used for a majority of web sites. Site creation will (for now) still be handled in tools designed for that such as Frontpage, Dreamweaver, notepad and the like. But, once the layout is contructed, it will be moved into a blog-like system and turned over to the site(s)'s contributors/editors for content posting.

Of course, people, themselves, are masochistic and may end up just sticking with hand-editing HTML SSIs for content creation or (and in some cases, I would use the phrase "and even worse") end up being sat down at a CMS whose controls resemble the complexity of flying a 747 and become numb to the constant barrage of semi-used options such as "would you like to add 7 needlessly complex levels of workflow to this document," "would you like to configure this content to sunset on the third full moon of every 4th quarterly of the year," etc. I feel sorry for these people. There are better ways to do things.

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