Monday, September 04, 2006

Blogger in Beta??

I simply couldn't resist checking out the new Blogger in Beta even though it meant I had to create a whole new blogger ID.

I'd been wondering for quite some time whether Blogger would be releasing something new, especially now that Vox is gradually being rolled out. I'm so excited to see what's in store for us.

From my initial cursory inspection, here's what's got my psyched so far:
  • We've got Labels! I got all excited to see labels (I guess these are like tags in Flickr or Categories in Wordpress.) now available as an option. Woohoo! Have been wanting those for such a long time. Heck, I had even resorted to making my own category searches using Technorati in my earlier Blogger blogs since that feature wasn't available.
  • I love Page Elements! Another big woohoo!! I love the way that you can just drag and drop things into different parts of the page, including the footer, the sidebar and even the header. Man, that's slick! And I totally love the fact that I can still insert html/javascript code (like Twitter) and play with it as an individual widget, instead of having to agonizingly search through my template to find the correct code. The fact that page elements are separate from the template itself also means I can easily switch from template to template without losing my customizations! I say again: Woohoo!! This is awesome. This totally rocks!
  • I love that I can still directly edit my Template! This for me is the big differentiator for Blogger, and is the reason why I still stay with this service even though a lot of prettier, fancier, slicker-looking services are available. I absolutely feel the need to be in control of what's going on with my blog. I like that I can choose where my Google ads will appear. I like the fact that I can style everything to the minutest detail. The control freak in me is gratified.
I also noticed a little more integration with other Google offerings. Specifically, you now need a Google account to create a blog. Since I'm already a Gmail user, this set-up doesn't bother me in the least.

That's it so far from me... but then, I've only been exploring for like 10 minutes. I'm sure I'll find more things to rave about, and hopefully nothing to rant about. hehe.

Was half-expecting a whole slew of new templates with the beta version, but I guess that's not yet available. Will probably come with the great unveil. I can hardly wait!