Monday, March 22, 2010

Blogger vs. Windows Live Writer

A couple of months ago, I started using Windows Live Writer (WLW) for creating blog posts instead of the default blog editor in Blogger. I’ve been meaning to get back to you on what I thought about it.  Many of you have asked about it, so here are the highlights (and one low light) in my opinion:

1. It’s Free.  You can download it here and start blogging!  It downloads to your PC and you don’t have to be connected to the internet to write a post.   It’s totally integrated with Blogger, and publishes your posts to your Blogger blog.

2. Photo uploads.  Uploading photos to Blogger can be a daunting task.  It takes awhile to upload multiple photos, and it’s clunky to move them around once they are uploaded.  In WLW, the upload is much faster AND you can apply effects to your pictures.  Instead of tweaking your photos in Picasa or Photoshop prior to uploading, you can now apply some fun effects to your pictures right in the post editor.

Chose from many photo borders:

photo effects

The advanced settings include rotate, add a watermark, and crop:

advanced effects

Adding a watermark to my picture:

watermark

IMG_5100

And, add effects like B&W, color pop, and emboss on the fly!

photo effects2 

3.  Preview.  You can preview what your post looks like as if it was live on your blog before you actually post it.  Your blog formatting comes over to WLW, so it looks exactly the same!

4.  Formatting.  Do you ever have problems formatting your posts in Blogger?  I do!  If you ever mess with the fonts and upload pictures, then you’ve probably had this problem too.  In Blogger, I’d go to preview my post and find my fonts were really huge and/or spaced out weird.  This doesn’t seem to happen in WLW.  It’s as easy as formatting in Word.  There are more fonts to chose from too!

5. Plug-ins.  WLW offers hundreds of additional plug-ins so you can customize what you’d like it to do.  It’s kind of like downloading apps for your smart phone.  For example, there is a Twitter plug-in that automatically tweets when ever you publish a blog post.   I don’t use this, but I’ve thought about trying it out.

6. Signature.  The lack of auto-signature functionality is a huge complaint of mine.  I cannot find a way to save my signature to the post template!  It’s really weird to me that WLW doesn’t offer a quick and easy way to do this, so if you know of a way, please share!  What I have to do to get around this is copy and paste my signature code to each post.  So annoying!

Overall, compared to the Blogger post editor, it’s way easier and more customizable!

Ok that’s all for now.  There is a lot more to WLW, but when you download it and try it out, you’ll see.  Let me know what you think!

19 comments:

  1. Wow...that sounds great! I think I may have to try it! xx

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  2. It sounds like something I would love! Too bad I have a Mac.

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  3. Awesome!!!! I am sold. So trying it out now!!! Thanks Lauren!!!

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  4. I use WLW and love it! Recently to add my signature I saved it as a photo and just add the photo everytime! HTH! Love ya!

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  5. Huh, sounds really interesting. I might have to check it out.

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  6. THANKS girl....i just may try it!!!

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  7. Thanks lady! I just did a blog post using it! Love it and wish I would have known about this earlier.:)

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  8. I guess I will have to go and check it out. I swear I am so computer illiterate though.

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  9. sounds cool I'm gonna try it

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  10. Never heard of this. i will try it out.. Hey are they paying you for this shout out?! haha

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  11. Thanks for info, I am always looking for something interesting on the Internet, i want to send
    photos for your blog

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  12. Sounds really great; I'll have to try it!

    On the photo uploading/formatting issues with blogger, though, if you go into settings and choose "new editor" (or something like that) it is MUCH more user-friendly.

    Still, the options you mentioned with the Live Wire sound great! I do a lot of photo posting, and having an editor right there...awesome!

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  13. We got a new computer and I set that up but haven't used it much. I think I'll start using that more now! Sounds much better!

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  14. Lauren, thanks so much for the tip on how to blog easier. I am definately going to try it out because I can become so stressed while using the blogger upload picture tool. I can never get my pictures positioned where I want them. I look foward to this new tool. Also, your new blog design looks great. :)

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  15. LOVE WLW! I still don't blog as often as I used to, but it makes it SO much less painful and frustrating....especially when adding a gazillion pics like I normally do!

    ♥moni

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  16. I really want to give that a try! I get intimidated by technology, but I'll force myself to try it out since I love that you can play around with the pictures. Thanks for the post!!

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  17. One more thing; I upload my pictures on Blogger from Picasa Web; I right click on the enlarged picture, select "copy image location," go back to the upload image portion of Blogger & plug that into the right side that says, "Add Image From the Web."

    That uploads the pictures instantly vs. it taking forever when you add an image from your computer.

    Just a thought!

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  18. Hmmm, I might have to try it! I hate pictures with Blogger. By the way, I LOVE your new blog design! :)

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  19. Wow I am speechless. My friend forwarded me your blog because of the post on the Window live blogging program but I have not moved from your blog since she sent it to me! I have chills reading your story and as a person who has had multiple miscarriages I understand your story. My pregnancies never were strong enough to make it as far as your green beans but it still hurts.

    I have a small blog as well that I just started and its only about staying healthy and saving money but I would be honored for you to become a follower. I am now your newest follower and fan (if that is appropriate for this subject).

    www.skinnyonadime.blogspot.com is my blog.

    Wow thank you for the inspiration also.

    ~~ Sara ~~

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